Wind farm cash could be spent improving services - MSP

Published: 2 Nov 2012 06:303 comments

CASH-STRAPPED council chiefs have blown almost a quarter of a million pounds processing wind farm applications.

Statistics show that since 2007 to the current day, Scottish Borders Council has spent £226,990 of public money processing the bids.

Opponents have branded it a waste of money.

Roxburgh and Berwickshire Conservative MSP John Lamont said: "These figures show the true extent of the damage caused by the SNP's reckless energy policies.

"In ruthlessly pursuing wind energy they have encouraged firms to flood local authorities with applications for new wind farms, taking up a huge amount of time and money.

"Instead of this money being spent on improving services and facilities in the Scottish Borders, it is going towards legal fees and processing countless planning applications.

"This is clearly a waste of money and I am sure that taxpayers in the Borders would much rather see their money spent elsewhere."

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  • Quixote.of.alba
    Unregistered User
    Nov 2, 10:49
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    What is the problem? The developers stand to make fortunes. Simply make sure the fees reflect the higher level of costs in processing wind farm applications. Why should the community carry the costs of what is a commercial venture. The scale of even the smallest turbine impacts on a great many more people than a house. Planning gain is not accepted leaving a reliance on "voluntary" Community Benefit. Therefore the costs to the community, through the council, should fall on the main beneficiaries: The developer and the landowner

    Recommend?   Yes 6     No 1

  • THX1138
    Unregistered User
    Nov 3, 10:37
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    Quixote - the problem is that Scottish council planning application charges are limited by law to £15k per application. In England, they are ten times that amount. You can thank the Scottish parliament for legislation that skews the application process in favour of the developer by making it unaffordable for councils to properly assess the vast amount of supporting material that accompanies a windfarm planning application.

    Recommend?   Yes 6     No 1

  • Hamish
    Unregistered User
    Nov 6, 12:59
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    Argggggggh! The SNPs modern day Darien Scheme; this is truly scary. If the £1 billion+ Western Isles Cable gets the green light Scotland, via four or so rolls of a dice, could be in a devastatingly tricky financial situation. It is like living in the 1960s seeing the ugly towers rise up, all the while knowing they are ugly and will not work. This madness must stop, but what are we to do? All politicians seem to support them for fear of.... What? Popular support? The idea of representing those who voted them in? The idea of having a moral backbone that is independent of party whips?

    Recommend?   Yes 5     No 0