Editor's note: This story has been updated with clarification that the wind projects will be taxed, not residents.
BINGHAM COUNTY, Idaho (KIFI) - The Bingham County Planning and Development Office provided an update on its current windmill projects after Local News 8 received emails regarding windmill placement in the Shelley/Firth area.
The Cedar Creek Wind project, located in the Taylor Creek area, is a private area that was originally approved in 2008 with additional phases added in 2010, 2016, and 2019.
The other project taking place is the Arco Wind project near the Bingham and Bonneville county lines.
Tiffany Olsen with Bingham County says the energy will be taxed, which will ultimately benefit the area.
"So it's not just a project where we're going to see the landowners benefit through rentals and different agreements as well as the project carrier. But we should see some reimbursements to the county as well," Olsen said.
Olsen says while some people may consider the windmills an eye sore, it is a better option than some other potential uses, which include gravel pits or quarry mines, which would bring more traffic to the area.
She says wildlife concerns have also been addressed. "So these folks have started with rigorous studies between the FAA, Idaho Fish and Game, climate control hydrology, environmental studies, looking at eagles, that Raptors, sage grouse, all of the wildlife impacts that could potentially be affected by a project like these and of these sizes," Olsen said.
The Cedar Creek Wind Project is in the turbine installation phase. Completion is estimated by the end of the year and operational next year.
The Arco Wind project is in the planning stages and is anticipated to break ground next year.