Testimonial: Not a positive project for our community

February 22, 2023

“I am not from Douglas County, but I do live in the Kansas Reading Wind Farm. Not far from the windfarm office.

At first, I was excited about the idea of the windfarm but when the process started, I realized this was in no way going to be a positive project for our community.

First, they sent out surveyors to survey the wildlife in the area. What a joke. I was seeing a truck parked on the side of the road with a guy walking around or just sitting in it. So, since they were very suspicious, I called the sheriff office several times. As did many other residents to check them out. Of course, they had out of state plates which only made them look even more suspicious. And each time the deputy would call to tell me they were surveying wildlife. Not one time did I ever see them go into a field to count wildlife. They just sat there in their trucks getting out occasionally to walk around or relieve themselves.

We had a decent size flock of Prairie Chickens in our area that used to feed in the field across from us and they only nested a mile or so away. My husband and I enjoyed them very much. Well now they are gone. The windfarm has been operational for three years now so I really don’t think they will be back.

The process was a mess, literally. The litter was awful, and traffic was the understatement of the day. One day they weren’t going to let me go through the road to my house because one of their trucks fell through the bridge to the south of our house. They used a large truck to block the road. When I finally convinced them to let me through, they followed me to my house. Privacy goes right out the window.

The movement across the windows from the turbine blades make me nauseous. We put up room darkening curtains to try to help with this issue. Another thing is I also do not sleep well.

Trucks come and go all day. The dust from road traffic made me sick. My family doctor told me I would need to start wearing a mask. And no this wasn’t during COVID. Dust to this very day is terrible. You live in a construction zone. Then when it is built you live in an industrial park. They are always breaking and need constant care.

I came home to people who were in my yard as I came home from work. I drove slowly by and got the license plate numbers and went on to a neighbor’s house to wait for the Sherriff dept. to come. The people had already left my house, but they did stop both trucks not far from my house. I didn’t know these people their vehicles didn’t say windfarm people. Turned out they were contractors working for the windfarm. So, I said to the deputy, and I quote, “Well I guess if they are working for the windfarm, they are ok then, ” The deputies reply was very forceful and I quote again, “NO ABSOLUTELY NOT. Just because they work for the windfarm does not mean they are ok.” And the deputy is right. They had no right to be walking all over our property just pointing at things. We didn’t sign a lease with them.

Their work is never done. Today there is a huge crane working on the wind turbines, who knows what is wrong with it. Sometimes the broken ones sit for months before they get to them. There office is just down the road from me. And they use our road like a freeway to get back to the office when the day is done.

Our county roads wash out whenever we have large rains because they reworked the roads before construction and were supposed to put them back the way they were. Now the gravel just washes out into the ditch and now it’s the counties responsibility to dig it out when it floods out.

Oh, did I mention they pay nothing in taxes. They gave the county a token payment in exchange for being tax free for the life of the farm. I haven’t even got to our property taxes.

To my knowledge only one property has sold in the windfarm since it was built. And it was just an old, abandoned farmhouse that was unlivable. It sold to one of the people who have wind turbines on the property next to it. I could go on, but you are tired of reading by now. I’m no one to give advice but if I did, just remember once they are up. They are there to stay.”