Lee County, Illinois breathes life into wind farm project

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Henry County Illinois wind farm (WQAD Photo)

DIXON, Ill. (AP) — A long-delayed wind farm project in north-central Illinois has gained an extension from officials in Lee County.

The Green River project would erect up to 60 wind turbines on 13,500 acres. The Lee County Board on Monday approved the extension of permits for the energy-generating venture.

The Dixon Telegraph reports the vote was 14-9.

Edina, Minnesota-based Geronimo Energy is developing the wind farm, which it acquired in 2013 from another company. The vote on Monday extended the time on special use permits required for the turbines.

Geronimo attorney Doug Lee says the Green River project could become the largest taxpayer in the county.

But the project has been controversial for years. The county’s zoning board recommended against it in 2013. Opponents say the wind farm would hurt property values.