Thursday, October 23, 2014
   
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County makes way for wind energy

LEXINGTON—Towering wind turbines are a sign of the times in Nebraska as residents look to alternative sources for energy.

The Dawson County commissioners approved new zoning regulations during their regular bimonthly meeting on Dec. 20, which make way for wind energy.

During a public hearing on the updated regulations, zoning administrator Pam Holbrook told commissioners that few changes were made to the existing plan except for a section addressing wind energy.

The new verbiage allows for construction of wind turbines following state and federal regulations, including requirements by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Federal Aviation Administration.

Rules for construction follow the requirements the county already has in place for special use permits.

Zoning regulations are required to be updated every 10 years.

In other business, commissioners:

heard the monthly crime report from sheriff Gary Reiber and completed the quarterly jail inspection.

accepted four conservation easements between the Central Platte Natural Resources District and James Guither, Griffith Brothers Farm and two from Darco Inc.

tabled indefinitely a proposal to change county employee policies to lump all vacation and sick leave into paid time off.

following a closed session, authorized chief deputy county attorney Kurt McBride to negotiate payment and/or termination of a previously adopted interlocal agreement between the county and the City of Lexington for geographic information system (GIS) work to be done for the city by county surveyor Jake Ripp.

instructed McBride to propose settlement agreements with Larry Paulsen and Russell Besmer in separate cases before the Tax Equalization and Review Commission.