BP's Tatics in Cape Vincent Ny

Sunday, March 9, 2014

October 2009 ~ An Argument To Debase The Most Beautiful Region Of NY State

by Kevin Forkey

A. First of all I would like to say hello to everyone and personally thank the Town Board for giving me a moment to speak my mind today. All I ask is that all of you forgive me if my public speaking skills are a little rusty, its been a spell since I've addressed a group of your importance. For all of you wondering who I am and why I am up here speaking before you today, a little of my background may be in order …

B. My name is Kevin Forkey. I have live, in this area for nearly my entire life. I successfully ran the Old F ink Farm (later named Mark Haven Farms in honor of my deceased brother ) for over 20 years and my father ran it for over 20 years before tha A funny thing about my circumstance when we moved here long ago was that my father had narrowed his choice of which property to purchase down to 2: The Frink Farm outside Depauville and the Zenda Farm outside of Clayton. The decision rested upon my mother feeling that the Frink Farm was the best choice because the Zenda was too close to the water (she felt all of her children who hadn't learned to swim would drown) and my father feeling that the Zenda Farm was a better choice because the type of soil would be more productive for farming ....Well I guess you can see who won but either way my parents long ago moved their family across this country and sought out a residence in this beautiful town, and we have been here every since.

  1. After spending nearly 40 years of my life working the land on my family farm as productively and in a manner as sustainable to the environment as our technology would allow there came a time when farming just didn't pay the bills anymore. I'm sure anyone here today that has farmed or knows someone in agriculture knows what I'm talking about. I was faced with the decision of what to do with the rest of my time here, I did a Iittl,e math and decided there was more money in selling 4 tires than there was in milking 4 teats. The end result:Forkey Auto Sales, it's all still family but minus the cows …

  2. D. Our transition into this new endeavor has been successful but I was still faced with the decision of what to do with all of this fallow farmland? My son Derek, 'who holds two degrees from St. Lawrence University in Biology and Environmental Science and I have always had great conversations on Global Warming, Deforestation, Pollution, and in general mankind's overall negative impact on the environment. Rather than just talk though we took action! The result was that we have planted over 80,000 trees of native species on my land as a way to help el~inate our carbon footprint on this earth and to return this fallow land back to nature. This was a labor of love performed mostly by
    Derek, and paid for by myself at a cost of over a quarter million dollars after the DEC cost sharing. These are actions not just words here....This money I spent would be a legacy for both our community and for our future generations as I certainly will never live to see any monetary benefit from any of this. I am merely someone who cares about this environment of ours in both words and actions.

  3. II. BODY
    A. Now that you all know who I am and what I stand for I hope I haven't lost your attention because that brings us up to this current matter at hand: The Horse Creek Wind Farm. My goal here today is to assume a leadership role in promoting a cause very near and dear to my heart: our environment and to bring into question how something determined to be so beneficial by the rest of the world could generate such opposition within our own community. To do this I must also convince you that my own concern is genuine and that this isn't all about the money.

  4.  This is quite a substantial challenge given the fact that I'm a major land owner and if the project does go forward my financial benefit would be significant. To prove that my support for this project has no monetary basis whatsoever, and to show that my support is driven only by my desire to better this world we all must live, I am prepared to donate all of the proceeds that I may gain from any wind power generated on my land directly to the Town of Clayton, to do with as they see fit. My only stipulation would be that a percentage of the funds that I deem appropriate be allocated to the Thousand Islands Central School System. I feel that this should help to ease any fears some of you may have that these tax dollars generated from this wind project will not reach the Town, and especially its school. I ask you all to keep in mind that this would be a substantial sum of money over the next twenty years, as the project is currently proposed; somewhere in excess of one million dollars. I only seek to prove to you that I am a man of words, and action, and I have no problem standing behind an idea I hold dear to my heart. My donation will be completely transparent for those of you who think I may just be making this proposal with any intentions of turning back further on down the road once the project is completed.  Now that I have gotten your attention I want to say that this path we are heading down with these new zoning laws is unacceptable, and should be unacceptable to anyone of you that truly feels that they are a responsible steward of their land. Any great decision in life has some risk associated with it, this is something none of us can argue. To dismiss any project that lands on the Town Boards desk if there are any risk associated with it is senseless. What we have to do as responsible citizens is weigh the risk versus the rewards. In the case of the wind farm these benefits will far outweigh the risks. There is no logic in the argument that we are protecting our environment by blocking this Wind Farm, we would actually only be furthering its demise. We live in a world that uses vast quantities of power and unless some great change comes about that is unforeseen to us presently, there is no end in siqht to our increasinq demand. The energy sources we currently utilize are non-renewable and of foreign origin. Not only are these sources being depleted at a rate that should fully exhaust them in the not too distant future, but in the mean time they are responsible for funding a great deal of the terrorism we see today. Our addiction to fossil fuels is responsible for the majority of the damage mankind has brought about to this world. Wind Power is the cleanest form of renewable energy available to us, period. If we embrace wind power we will be setting an environmentally responsible example as our legacy for future generations and set an example for other communities to follow if they truly care about the environment as well. Our entire community would benefit from this project. There is the obvious monetary benefit, but also there is the increased tax revenue and new jobs creation to help kick-start our local economy in these difficult economic times. How are their so many wind farms in operation across our great country already, if those communities hadn't deemed them beneficial? There are detractors with every project, but the truth is an independent University study found that 72% of the constituents of Lewis county thought the Maple Ridge Wind Farm had a positive effect on Lewis County, and 77% supported the idea of the projects growth. These are the real facts we should be discussing rather than the few individual detractors stories. Each and every one of these projects faced lengthy review before approval from the appropriate state and federal agencies so that any risk associated from these projects would be minimized and the benefits maximized. This is why we created agencies like the DEC and EPA many years ago. They are there to ensure that development coexists with our environment, and to protect either one from being abused. To recklessly adopt development at the expense of the natural world is something none of us would want, but to cease all development that impacts the environment in any way is equally undesirable. These agencies are given the task to determine where the fine line exists between the two, no easy task I'm sure. The Special Committee was faced with this monumental task, a task that has no legal precedent for a panel of average citizens. Although I am thankful for the members of the committees participation in this arduous task, I must question how their recommendations are to become law on such short notice, and furthermore how these citizens became experts on the laws of zoning as it applies to wind power generation? How and why were these people chosen and why are their recommendations becoming law so easily.As average citizens you would have to almost expect them to err on the side of safety and against this idea put forth by detractors of "big business" moving into town. I mean no disrespect here but this is not how laws are supposed to come to be. Are there any other citizens concerned that our rights as citizens may be getting abused if this comes to be? In effect we are bypassing all the years of study and data created by the appropriate regulatory agencies, with regards to these laws, and placing the power in the hands of a few average citizens.

    So what am I trying to achieve you may ask? I am asking the board as a proven supporter of the environment, to reconsider the decisions they made in the August 26th meeting to accept the recommendations of the wind law committee that would siqnificantlv chanqe the Towns existinq wind law. Our existing wind law allows for responsible wind development in our community, and if they are deemed inappropriate I want the changes to come from the appropriate regulatory agency not from the average citizen with no experience or prior knowledge on the subject, who used information gathered from unreliable sources. This is just not how things work or how they should work. The committee had an agenda to eliminate this project, not to protect our environment. The adoption of these new zoning laws is an example of our community taking many dangerous steps in the wrong direction, and is a cause for great concern amongst myself, my fellow environmentalists, and the local supporters of wind energy in our community. Sometimes the decisions that are the best for the community are not always the most popular. It is your responsibility to lead us down the correct path and show us the leadership your position entails, and to not sway from
    this position in the presence of some opposition. Do what is best forthe community and don't close the door on this project. Thank you for your time and hopefully your careful consideration on this matter.

Kevin Forkey
 Lafargeville, NY 13656


Anonymous said...

Mr. Forkey did go on a bit, didn't he.

Here is the shorter version:

"I want my money! I want my money, dammit!"

Anonymous said...

One can only guess if Mr. Forkey was genuine in his offer, only time and any subsequent development will bear that out.
It is interesting to note that, to date, no other leaseholders in any of the Northern New York regions have stepped forward to duplicate his offer to donate their potential windfall to their community. My guess is most folks, if they don't doubt his sincerity, consider him a fool for that.

The bottom line is it doesn't matter much if anyone is willing to forego their profit, the concept of industrial wind energy is a scam of epic proportions, perpetuated on the world's taxpayers and consumers.No amount of theatrics like Mr. Forkey's, will alter that.

His charge that local citizens are not capable of forming a basis for local regulatory laws must be music to the ears of the ART.X designers and supporters.

Where does the notion originate from, that a detached State or Federal bureaucracy can better decide what is in the interest of local residents?

The fundamental basis of the municipal home rule concept is that local communities have a right to determine their own destiny and form criteria for land use policies.

His plea to the Town to disregard local input is repulsive, and does great damage to his credibility.

Anonymous said...

Makes one wonder from where used car salesmen got their reputations.

Anonymous said...

Well 8:44PM I see you haven't croaked yet?

Anonymous said...

The thousand Islands is not the most beautiful place in NY State, what about the Adirondacks in the fall of the year.