The Wayne County Commissioners on Wednesday approved a change to local ordinances that will effectively ban the establishment of a wind farm in the county.

The commissioners voted unanimously, 3-0, to pass a multi-level change to county laws on wind energy, thereby creating a requirement that those who wish to install industrial turbines on their property must seek a zoning variance to do so. This means future efforts to bring industrial turbines to the area would be determined on a case-by-case — more specifically, on a property-by-property — basis.

The vote followed a Monday recommendation by the county's advisory plan commission to enact the proposed ordinance change. The group met for a public hearing that night during which nearly two dozen individuals spoke about industrial wind power. Many of them did not want the turbines in Wayne County.

The ordinance change is among the first major modifications to rules on wind energy conversion systems in the county since such laws were adopted by county government in 1993.

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