Lobbying and stroking is going on in advance of tomorrow night's meeting of the Jefferson County Legislature's Rules and Finance Committee. On the docket, the Galloo Island Wind Pilot and no matter what happens at the committee level, the measure will go to the full board next week.
More tidbits are coming out about what will be built on the island in addition to all those wind mills. There will be 23 homes built for workers along with a health club and a helipad. All of it tax-exempt under the auspices of the County's Industrial Development Agency.
Those in favor of the PILOT agreement dismiss opponents as misinformed and not understanding the economics of the project.
Those against argue the project is already heavily subsidized and that communities throughout the county should not lose out on their chance to share in the economic activity resulting from the half billion dollar project. At issue is sales tax which if lost will deny municipalities from Antwerp to Worth their share of the tax. A share guarenteed by a deal ratified in 2004 by the County Legislature.
A high powered lawyer for Big Wind is busy lobbying, trying to convince lawmakers they are doing a good thing by granting the massive exemptions.
For attorney Robert Bergdorf its a case of selling not the merits of wind....but instead selling self esteem to local lawmakers anxious to say they have "created" jobs. Tuesday night will be the first chance to guage just how good a salesman he is.