The following is a letter to the editor from Tracie Spooner, a lifetime resident of Middletown who said she moved away because of the wind turbines. The Middletown Town Council recently proposed an ordinance that would restrict the placement of turbines in Middletown. Once the ordinance has been drafted by the administration, it will go before a series of public meetings and the council will vote to approve it into law.
I have read a lot of negative comments recently directed towards the town council and specifically Councilor Chris Semonelli regarding the decision to restrict wind turbines in Middletown, and I felt that I needed to address this topic since I have had my own personal experiences with the wind turbines on Mitchell’s Lane.
I use to live right next door to the wind turbines on Mitchell’s Lane, they were approximately 100 feet from my property line. I wish I had a councilor like Chris Semonelli back in 2008 when the wind turbines on Mitchell’s Lane were being approved. Approving those wind turbines was the final straw which drove me and my husband out of Middletown - where we grew up, went to school, and planned to retire.
We went to the meeting, they had one meeting – yes, one meeting. We tried to fight it because there was no ordinance in place back in 2008. The plans passed within a half-hour, even though there was no research done; there was no impact survey; and no certified testing. The only information presented to the zoning committee was a brochure that was produced by the seller of the wind turbines.
The seller of the wind turbines was the person who presented the plans to the zoning committee for the Mitchell’s Lane resident. I would like to point out that a month earlier, Portsmouth Town Council had just rejected plans for a similar 60-foot turbine in the Glenn Farm/Sandy Point farm area from this same seller because he did not have adequate testing or surveys done.
I don’t believe wind turbines should be installed in areas that are zoned for residential living and I don’t think there should be any exceptions. I had the misfortune of living next to the wind turbines for a year after they were put up, so from personal experience, I can tell you they are not quiet.
During the meeting in 2008, the seller of the wind turbines stated that the noise level is the same decimal level as a conversation which is just not true. There is a light humming noise that emanates from the turbines at all times and when the blades are spinning, it is more like a small engine plane flying overheard. The flicker effect is extremely annoying, especially if the sun is hitting it the right way; it’s sort of a vertigo effect. I work from home and I had to move my office into the basement in an isolated room to try to avoid the humming noise all day.
I find it disturbing that people would make comments on issues that they do not have first hand experience with. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for 'Green', but you also have to take into consideration a person’s quality of life” and kudos to Chris Semonelli for actually considering the residents of Middletown and how the wind turbines could impact them.