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South Marysburgh votes ‘no’ to wind turbines

Votes cast  Saturday indicate residents do not want wind turbines installed in South Marysburgh.

The South Marysburgh Mirror hosted a vote on the question: “Do you want industrial wind turbines installed in South Marysburgh like the ones proposed by wpd Canada and Gilead Power for their projects near Milford and on the south shore?”

Results of 542 ballots cast: 489 ‘No’; 51 ‘Yes’ 2 spoiled ballots. Based on a population of 868 in South Marysburgh, the voter turnout is 62.4 per cent.

The vote at the Milford Town Hall was restricted to full and part-time residents and property owners in South Marysburgh, with proof a eligibility required. Voting was in person or by proxy.

“This is how democracy is supposed to work,” Prince Edward-Hastings MPP Todd Smith said. “The debate over wind turbines has torn at the social fabric of the County for most of the last decade. The citizens of South Marysburgh decided to hold a vote and settle an important question.”

Smith said the Green Energy Act, which stripped municipalities of most of their planning and zoning authority for these projects, has left local residents and municipal councils with little say in where wind turbines can be located.

“In an April 13 interview withe the Belleville Intelligencer, Dalton McGuinty stated that communities without majority support for wind turbines would go to ‘the back of the line’.

Smith intends to write McGuinty to inform him of the referendum and question him on what he said to the Intelligencer newspaper.

“What I want to know and what the people of Prince Edward County deserve to know is whether the Premier will direct the Minister of Environment to use the authority granted to him by the EBR process to deny approval for the projects in South marysburgh as a result of the referendum. If he doesn’t then what he said to the Intelligencer wasn’t worth the paper it was printed on.”

 “I was stunned to learn that this is the first vote of its kind in Ontario, if not Canada,” said Steve Ferguson, editor and publisher. Ferguson hosted the vote to help understand what the community wants.
“I cannot recall a time when I have felt such a mixture of emotions as I do now about our provincial government and the stripping of our rights through the Green Energy Act. With the stroke of a pen, it eliminated any democratic input from municipal governments concerning an issue it knew would affect hundreds of thousands of people, particularly throughout rural Ontario.”

The vote, he says, is not about harnessing or not harnessing the wind to generate electricity; “the vote is about whether it should or shouldn’t be done in the South Marysburgh community using Industrial Wind Turbines.”
At the end of the day, he said, “this vote is all about the future and values of our community,” he said. “Many thanks to all the volunteers who gave up part of their weekend to assist with the vote, and to all the residents and property owners in South Marysburgh who came out to vote.”


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  1. Doris Lane says:

    Beth I think this site is about a hundred different things and yes I forgot about the things council has no control over re education and policing etc.
    I just resent all taxes I pay because so much of it is wasted by every level of government
    Ostrander Point is a perfect example of provincial money wasted on subsides paid to big oil etc. to put up IWT’s that are of no use to us. And all this on crown land and no one is payinfg any attention to what the residents of SM want.
    Right now I wish we would get more rain so the farmers can get a good crop this year–OH OH I am off topic again

  2. Beth says:

    Well Doris, I guess that you don’t drive on the roads, or walk anywhere on the side walks. And you must spend a fortune on garbage, because you won’t be recycling. You must not have any children or grandchildren living in the county attending school here. Guess what, taxes pay for these things too. But this article was about the vote in South Marysburgh not the taxes, that discussion happened a couple of months ago.

  3. Doris Lane says:

    Council will not talk to us on this site. It is below their dignity to do so. I know a few of them read it
    It makes one wonder what we pay our taxes for. I for one get no benefit from the txes we pay–well maybe fire service.
    Oh i forgot got a new street on Gladstone but it has certainly been a hazzle
    Since I do not take advantage of the areas,the libraries, chrystal palace the theatres,parks(maybe the dog partk a little bit)
    Can’t think of anything in the county that I use that I do not pay diretly for outside of the tax base. So I waste approx $25,000 a year

  4. Marie says:

    Council is certainly not talking to us via this website…

  5. m york says:

    It dosn’t seem to matter who you talk to out there in the community. People are disgusted with the way Mayor/ Council has handled thngs lately with the delegating of duty to the CAO and other newly appointed acting CAO’s. WE DID NOT AGREE TO THIS Wake up Mr.Mayor/Council

  6. Doris Lane says:


  7. David Norman says:

    The commentary on this article highlights the fact that we seem to be spinning our blades and going nowhere fast. I’ll attempt to explain this premise with the following musing: Every once in a waxing moon faze, I entertain the inherent masochistic nature of my human psyche and watch something on television. I have found that in moderate doses my disdain for this activity actually stimulates healthy, in the preventative sense, thoughts, much like a cup of coffee, a glass of wine, or a cold beer on a hot day. So I watched the Olympic women’s bicycle road competition, one of the most ultimate politically correct, civilized jingoistic expressions that mankind has yet contrived. Interspersed in this coverage were the inevitable sponsorship commercials. One of these, an ad for insurance coverage, emphasized the fear based scenarios of providing for a more secure world for “my children and grandchildren”, free of any financial encumbrances I may have created prior to my death… perhaps so that they might still love and respect (remember) me, hopefully at least so long as I’m still decaying flesh or ash dust in a container. I often wonder whether knowing that I’ve left them a few extra insurance bucks to get by will make my own denial of death any easier. All the while, the very Insurance company offering me this privilege, is investing premiums in Industrial Wind Turbine developments, a folly which I consider more destructive to life here on earth, hence my children and grandchildren, than any monetary encumbrance I might leave them. Using a technology based solution, which is demonstrably limited to a short life span and is dependent upon the very fossil fuels it purports to replace, for its existence, is an apparent but seemingly ignored absurdity. I sometimes think it would be better if I were put out of the misery in which this Insurance company envisions that I live and which they are helping to create, by being fatally bashed on the head with an iron, instead of being tortured to death with irony. What makes this commercial even more personal and ironic, is that the actor who represents this Insurance company and expounds their virtue, was my next store neighbor for over a decade when I lived in Toronto. I saw his face and heard his voice more times in the space of two hours of TV viewing than I did in several months while we lived less than 20 feet apart. I’d rather have the “assurance” that the natural beauty which I have come to perceive will still be here for future generations rather than “insuring” its demise.

  8. David Norman says:

    At this point virginia, with the EBR disposition on Ostrander imminent, it does not matter who is on top (of the comment heap that is), it’s who makes the most compelling noise that determines the climax!

  9. virginia says:

    LOL –I’m not biting

  10. Marnie says:

    Sorry, David, but I am not Julia Roberts. I just don’t have the teeth for that job.

  11. David Norman says:

    Yes virginia you are correct – “btw, I don’t know anyone on this site. And you don’t know me”, implies appropriate defeasible reasoning. After all, how could we possibly come to know the many unrelated facets of the pseudonymous virtual character that makes up virginia.

  12. virginia says:

    Yes, Chris, of course you are correct-the movie was called Field of Dreams and based on Shoeless Joe.
    I just thought it was interesting that the book was written by a Canadian. I like interesting little facts like that.

    btw, I don’t know anyone on this site. And you don’t know me.

  13. David Norman says:

    Marnie, I think I know who you are… you’re actually Julia Roberts living incognito in PEC! And… the commentary in this post has really inspired me… first I’ve come up with the title for the law suit affidavit, a play on the number of “no turbine” voters in the poll; four eighty nine becomes the Foreignines, a wonderful xenocentric reference. And virginia has inspired the theme and title for the second episode, “It Comes Back to Byte You”… a sort of virtual horror/thriller theme based on possibilities derived from quantum connectivity with some esoteric views into what the future holds for this Industrial Wind Turbine world.

  14. Marnie says:

    Actually, by reading your posts, I have come to know you fairly well. I have never “attacked” you, but it is going overboard to suggest that an innocuous remark such as the one made by Doris could be considered “threatening” or that my comment of “two many chiefs, not enough wampum” could be construed as a racial slur. You seem very eager to take offence. Why?

  15. Chris Keen says:

    Actually, Kinsella’s novel was called “Shoeless Joe” not “Field of Dreams”.

  16. virginia says:

    Really. You don’t know me. But you do seem to like to attack me. Why?

  17. Marnie says:

    Doris may think that she knows who I am, but I doubt that her guess is correct. However, I find nothing threatening in her remark. What is alarming is your paranoia Virginia. You see the bogeyman everywhere.

  18. David Norman says:

    virginia, almost forgot… it’s apparent, as Chris and Jo Anne have pointed out, that WPD is in dire need of an editor. Could be a match made in heaven!

  19. David Norman says:

    virginia… ooops typo. Should be “or maybe ‘you’re’ just preoccupied”. “your” – “you’re”… it’s that “pole” – “poll” thing again. Good thing you pointed it out.

  20. David Norman says:

    virginia, Mark was speaking of the character of reclusive author turned activist (Terrence Mann) he played in the movie.
    Your comment “Field of dreams was not written by JD Salinger. (Catcher in the Rye) It was written by WB Kinsella, who is Canadian”, while a testament to your “English degree” was not a logical extension of Mark’s reference… quite bizarre actually , although I do appreciate that for its entertaining absurdity. Perhaps the stress of your pronounced “poll” vs “pole” admonishment clouded your thoughts, or maybe your just preoccupied with looking over your shoulder for the anti-wind boogy man/woman… all is forgiven.

  21. virginia says:

    James Earl Jones is an actor. I think you have him mixed up with JD Salinger, who his character is loosely based on.
    Field of dreams was not written by JD Salinger. (Catcher in the Rye) It was written by WB Kinsella, who is Canadian.

  22. Doris Lane says:

    Virgina–I was one of the people who said to acouple of people who did not want to reveal their fullnames that I thought I knew who they were and I could understand them not wanting to relieve their names . That is not threatening
    I was also told who you were, I do not know where you live and could not care
    At this point let us turnour thoughts to something that might be a little fun like the play david is writing

  23. Mark says:

    James Earl Jones roles indeed. And not to forget most every families favourite the “Field of Dreams”. A great writer before his times who became reclusive and disliked attention but was convinced to take up a cause. And the cause he took up with all his being and belief. Hmmmm!!!

  24. David Norman says:

    My goodness Mark, I’m flattered beyond words… James Earl Jones… did you know he was the very first celebrity to appear on Sesame Street!!! He was incredible in “Cry, the Beloved Country”!!! and I can see a Darth Vader persona in the “Passing Wind” narration, although I’m a baritone.

  25. Jo Anne Slaven says:

    Chris Keen, I’ll see you your

    “earths’ history”
    “accelerated by mankind activities”
    “impact of these rising level of GHG’s”
    “offset within months of 20 year life”
    “intelligent use of the the planets resources”

    and I’ll raise you a

    “green house gases…that is trapping heat in our atmosphere”

    My husband is retired from an engineering company, and he tells me that absolutely nothing ever left that office in print until it had been proofed by at least two people. One mistake – even a minor one – and your credibility would be gone.

    I note that this missive from wpd is “#1 in a series”. I hope they hire an editor before #2.

  26. Mark says:


    As for your character role how does”James Earl Jones”sound. Am I fired already?

  27. Mark says:

    Perhaps looking to scoop lawn signs! LOL

  28. David Norman says:

    Virginia, I to have a similar concern. I observed two fellows with whom I’ve had frequent debates in this context on CountyLive stop at the top of my driveway and slowly pull away, all the while starring at my home and clearly laughing. How would you interpret that?

  29. virginia says:

    I find the recent comments to the effect of ” I know you are and where you live”, directed at some of the posters on this site to be somewhat disturbing. They may not be meant to have a threatening tone, but certainly could be interpreted that way.

  30. Doris Lane says:

    David I put it in but it didnot print
    doris Lane

  31. David Norman says:

    Doris, we’re more alike than I thought… like I’m likely to do, you asked me to send you an email without giving me your email address.
    While I’m enjoying the humorous aspects of this idea, I am quite serious about this… I will use it to strive, with humor and humility, to expose the hypocrisy that is inherent in all human endeavor. This is the only realization that can effect change.
    Bye the bye, I’m looking for a Joe Pecsi like trope for a sub plot in the first episode. And, like my own life, I can’t figure out my own role… any suggestions (I’d like Donna, Beth and/or virginia to pipe in on this).

  32. virginia says:

    please everyone, learn the correct use of “poll” and “pole”
    thank you

  33. Doris Lane says:

    David it would seem that Mark is right on , I probably do remind people of Bea Arthur–during the election people said I shot from the hip.
    Hope you can make your idea work as gary sYS WHAT WE NEED IS A LITTLE HUMOUR
    I must have hit the caps again
    David I would like to email you but this stupid computer can only send to people who send me an email first so I can put it on my contact list–david send me an email

  34. David Norman says:

    Actually Gary I’m glad you piped in… I was thinking Nicholas Campbell from Da Vinci’s Inquest as your characterization and a Gordon Pinsent persona for Rob McMurtry … I’ll need to consult Mark however.

  35. Gary Mooney says:

    David, I love the idea. What we need is to inject some humor into this situation. It’s been all too serious up to this point.

  36. David Norman says:

    Fantastic Mark .. I’ve penciled you in as a casting director. This thing could become an benign example of “Art dictating Life”… perhaps just the ointment needed for this festering wound!

  37. Mark says:

    I don’t know David, I was thinking Doris’s character could be more in line with Bea Arthur. She does shoot from the hip!

  38. David Norman says:

    Doris, I can’t decide whether I see you more as a Meryl Streep or Betty White type character.

  39. Doris Lane says:

    You are correct we have the talent–the producers, the directors, the musical talemt to produce songs and the actors. There are several people who could head this up but I would hesitate to name anyone as they are all good
    What a great little show to put on at Mount Taber in the midst of all the controversy

  40. David Norman says:

    In my research I’ve read and recorded each and every blog/article entry and accompanying commentary on Countylive’s “Wind Watch” and the local newspapers concerning Industrial Wind Turbine (IWT) development in Prince Edward County (PEC). It occurred to me while reading the commentary on this article, that with some narrative, local music and character development that we could have the next great reality show soap opera blockbuster, which I’ve taken the liberty of naming, “Passing Wind”. Kind of a cross between Coronation Street and Law& Order! This is not satire or sarcasm. I’m absolutely serious and in fact have taken this impetus to start creating the screenplay. Just think of it, the wonderful PEC location shots available… the characters, the drama, the humor and most importantly the economic possibilities and promotion! There is abundance of local talent and technical expertise to fulfill all of the necessary needs for production… it’s just like the typical premise from a Mickey Rooney – Andy Hardy film. The premier episode will open in a courtroom where a class action suit by 489 residents of South Marysburgh is being introduced against two IWT development companies and the MOE for “ negligent environmental nuisance” and “trespass”. This is where all the major characters will be introduced. Think of all the “green” (room) jobs this will create. What do you all think? Comment here or email me at

  41. Chris Keen says:

    I went to my mailbox this morning and discovered an information flyer from wpd Canada along with my mail.

    What struck me, apart from the laughable name – “white pines wind farm” – was the number of errors contained in the flyer.

    A sampling:

    “earths’ history”
    “accelerated by mankind activities”
    “impact of these rising level of GHG’s”
    “offset within months of 20 year life”
    “intelligent use of the the planets resources”

    If wpd can’t be bothered to put out an error-free information flyer, why should anyone believe what’s in the flyer or trust that wpd can safely erect an IWT that runs without incident?

  42. David Norman says:

    Mark, I wish you had of said “don’t eat that” “Bater”.

  43. Mark says:

    This doesn’t surprise me. Afterall the County Sustainability Group views us as nothing more than “easy targets” for special interest groups. We should know our place as we are naive and uninformed. They know what is best for us. And if we should speak out against this boondoggle then we are hit with the guilt trip of not supporting it for our children and grandchildren. I say “Don’t eat that Harold”!

  44. David Norman says:

    Beth, how presumptuously self-effacing of you to dictate that “everyone thinks their position is right”. I have never considered that I am “right”, just that I do not know with any surety. This “bickering” as you and Donna have condescended is neither “pedantic” nor “asinine”… and while not specifically informative at times, as a strategic local phenomena, may indeed have helped tip the balance against Industrial Wind Turbines in the EBR (political) decision regarding Ostrander. Political decisions, where the “rules” (GEA) are stacked in favor of a disposition are often made on quantitative not qualitative factors.
    And I find it very peculiar that you divert to referencing “rare earth” magnets in the context of your comment on the righteousness of Industrial Wind Turbines in your subtle characterization of “green energy” and the South Marysburgh IWT referendum. This very unusual commentary idiosyncrasy is reminiscent of that of Rob Williams of the County Sustainability Group.
    How’s that for a rebuttal?.. I did not want to see you go “unrecognized”.

  45. Loretta Salet says:

    @Beth, The label “anti-wind” is a misnomer and one applied by the “pro-wind” collective. Everyone that I know who opposes Industrial Wind Turbines, does so because of the inefficiencies, the cost and the destruction to local habitat as well as the health hazards. These are mature responsible adults who believe in “green” energy, but not at any cost. They recycle, reduce and reuse. They have taken the time to research the issue and not just believe the ads paid for by large Wind Corporations and industry associations that they have created to support their goals. The Canadian (Harper) government is muzzling scientists, reducing their ranks to remove obstacles to industry giants. The Ontario government (MGuinty) has done much the same with the Green (Greedy) Energy Act by removing any possible opposition by communities with vested interest in where they live and pay taxes. We have seen how in a less controlled market, like the US Banking system, that instead of becoming self-regulating as the experts (Geenspan et al) kept touting, it degenerated into money making schemes that were only self-serving. The Rich got richer, the poor got poorer. BY reducing environmental controls, local community control, the corporations get richer while the province and municipalities get futher in debt and then all the little people like you and I have to pay for it. The problem with the current technology used in IWTs and solar palnts,is that it is not “green” yet. It is too inefficient and there is no way to store the power economically so it can be used WHEN IT IS NEEDED. Instead Ontario ha spent about $1.8 BILLION over the past few years to GET RID OF EXCEES UNNEEDED power. Who do you think covered that bill?

  46. Lori Smith says:

    @Anne, Lennox & Addington generators are not atop 40-storey tall buildings that are inaccessible to local firefighters. If a turbine has a fire. the blades could be flung hundreds of meters away (the tips are moving up to 400 km/h) Which way will the tower fall? The only thing local firefighters will be able to do is evacuate an area around the tower and hope it is sufficient and then attempt to control any ground fires that result. A completely different scenario.

  47. Beth says:

    Fires, they happen, they start, whether it’s a problem with a turbine, a vehicle in the scrub, an errant spark from lawn equipment or some idiot deciding it’s ok to have “just a little camp fire” in the middle of a drought. Any of these things have the potential of causing the “whole south shore to burn up”.

    Insults and derogatory remarks abound on this site and everyone thinks they are right and will not accept that anyone else might have a different opinion. This is on both sides.

    Here is my 2 bits:
    I think Wind Turbines are a viable energy source that must be further developed, in addition to solar and other forms of green energy production. The magnets that are in the turbines are used in an ever increasing number of sound equipment, including some home stereo or PA systems used by yes, your favourite bands, makes the whole thing lighter. I have been looking forward to seeing the results of this pole to find out what the majority of the population of S. Marysburgh felt about the turbines proposed in their ward. I read that these are not wanted whether you use the voter turnout numbers or the numbers based on the population of the ward.

    This pedantic bickering between the pros and antis is asinine. I will hazard a guess and say that many pros are not people with options on IWT developments, they are just people who want to see a larger focus on green energy production and reduction on fuel burning energy production.

    Let the rebuttals against me begin!

  48. Anon says:

    Doris if you’re referring to Dwight Duncan, he was born in Windsor and is the MPP for Windsor-Tecumseh.

  49. m york says:

    I believe that everyone should hang up the windmill issue for one day to call all county council. Tonight July 24 Council will vote on the delegation of duties by council to municipal employees. The people of P.E.C. voted on election night who we wanted to represent us and to be our voice. Why is council not willing to do the job they are being paid to do? Why would council NOT want to know what is going on in the municipality, why would council want one person to run the show? On the county website(tonights meeting) i encourage you to see what council is no longer willing to.So that being said i would suggest you take some of your paycheck and give it back to P.E.C. There isn’t a person out there who dosn’t know how dangerous it can be to have one person in control and all the power. It dosn’t matter if they work for a grocery store,bank,hospital whatever they would never run their business with one person having all the say. Speak up now because enough is enough…..

  50. Doris Lane says:

    Good quotes by Sue 3–nitice they are quotes from reputible sources
    Sure there have bee fires in transformers. Transformers are on small polls usually in an area easily accesible.

    THINK for a minte where these monster IWT’s are? In the middle of scrubb land that would burn quickly and those blades ca through many feet–not a fire started by a warm tailpipe on a truck.

    Also consider the materials that would be burning from the turbine.

    The air inthe County is difficult to breath now can you imagine what a fire on the South Shore would do to the county

    This is just another health hazzard put in our way by these useless IWT’s–uselss because they produce little electricity and are costing the consummer large amounts of money in hydro bills



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