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Letter: Collins is trying to protect jobs at Niagara Falls base

Collins is trying to protect jobs at Niagara Falls base

Recently, Rep. Chris Collins’ motives for authoring a bill to eliminate tax credits for industrial wind turbines near military installations have come under attack. He is accused of ignoring facts to promote the interests of the oil and gas industries. Other facts lead to a different conclusion.

First, until such time as an official statement from the base commander or his designated public relations officer is released, there is no official position from the base. The opinions of others are as relevant as yours or mine.

Second, the lobbying firm (Cassidy and Associates) representing the wind project developer in Yates and Somerset also lobbies on behalf of military bases in New Jersey. Perhaps (and I stress, perhaps) there is no current issue of jeopardy to an existing mission at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, but a future mission may be jeopardized by the presence of wind turbines.

It would be a win-win for the lobbying firm if the wind turbines are built and the presence of those then represents an encroachment to a future mission for the base, resulting in a mission being sent to a base in New Jersey instead of Niagara Falls.

Third, a recent study by the Navy in Corpus Christi, Texas, has found that wind turbines do, in fact, interfere with radar at military bases.

The long-term effect of wind turbines on the air base cannot be known at the present. However, it makes no sense to risk the future of thousands of jobs based either on speculation that everything will end up OK, or on some belief that Collins’ motives are somehow sinister.

Steve Royce

Appleton

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