Zoning Board Denies Variance For Wind Turbines On Findlay’s North Side

2/15/19 – 5:15 A.M.

Failure to get a zoning variance has derailed One Energy’s plans to build new wind turbines on Findlay’s north side. The city zoning appeals board voted 3-1 against a variance that would have helped clear the way for the construction of one or two 400-foot turbines at the southeast corner of Crystal and Bigelow avenues. Findlay zoning laws allow for 40 to 100-foot wind turbines.

Neighbors in the area are fighting One Energy’s plans. They have encouraged city officials to stop the plans, citing worries about reduced property value and health concerns.

However, the battle may not be over yet. One Energy CEO Jereme Kent says they will pursue legal options to get the turbines built.

MORE: History of the proposed turbine project.

Hancock County Rates As “Paycheck Friendly”

A new survey by SmartAsset.com shows Hancock County is “paycheck friendly.” The rankings from the financial website show Hancock County ranks 10th in Ohio on its “paycheck friendliness index.” The rankings take into account household income versus cost of living in an area.

The only county in northwest Ohio to rate higher than Hancock County was Defiance County, which came in at ninth.

MORE: SmartAsset 

Findlay Zoning Appeals Committee To Discuss Proposed Wind Turbine On North Side

2/14/19 – 11:46 A.M.

Plans for a wind turbine on Findlay’s north side hit a delay Thursday. A group of developers out of Castle Road, Colorado submitted plans for a turbine at 2749 Crystal Avenue, but asked to table those plans during Thursday’s Findlay City Planning Commission meeting. A representative for the group said it made more sense for the plans to move through a zoning committee meeting first.

Findlay’s board of zoning appeals meets at 6 p.m. tonight and will discuss the issue.

Several residents from the surrounding area were in attendance at the planning meeting to protest the turbine proposal. City Law Director Don Rasmussen reassured them the plans will have to come back to the planning commission before it moves to city council.

Proposed Turbine Location:

Blanchard Station Apartment Plans Move Forward, Neighbors Again Raise Concerns

2/14/19 – 11:19 A.M.

A new housing development in Findlay has taken another step forward, despite protests from neighbors in the area. The Findlay City Planning Commission took up discussion about the proposed Blanchard Station Apartments during a Thursday meeting. Residents on Bishop Lane again brought up concerns about increased traffic on their street.

The development in question would sit south of Melrose Avenue and north of the Bernard Avenue neighborhood. The original proposal used Bishop Lane as the only access point for the 50 unit complex. A change to the plan adds a connection to the south on Concord Court.

Bishop Lane residents had lobbied for the developer to find a different northern access. Some argued against the Concord Court connection, saying it would only bring more traffic through their neighborhood.

The planning commission approved the plans. City council will also have to approve the plans before construction can begin.

MORE: Concerns from neighbors in the area.

Renovations Planned For Putnam County Courthouse This Year

2/14/19 – 7:02 A.M.

Putnam County’s 2019 budget includes $2.5 million for improvements at the courthouse. The Putnam County Sentinel reports the work includes replacing the leaky roof. The plans also include renovations on the east entrance of the building. The county will install a new ramp and stairs. They might also replace doors on the east side.

An elevator replacement project gets underway in the courthouse this month.

MORE: Putnam County Sentinel

Man Involved In Police Chase Indicted

2/14/19 – 6:45 A.M.

A man involved in a police chase along U.S. 224 in January is facing charges. The Hancock County grand jury recently indicted 41-year-old Matthew Holman of Toledo on counts of failure to comply with the order or signal of a police officer and receiving stolen property.

Holman allegedly stole a car on January 31st and then sped away when a Findlay police officer tried to pull him over. Officers arrested Holman after he abandoned the car in a wooded area in Marion Township.

A passenger in the car is also facing charges. 41-year-old Victor Vawter faces one count of obstructing official business.

MORE: Details on January 31st chase.

Downtown Review Board To Hear Complaints About Two Buildings

2/14/19 – 5:31 A.M.

Findlay’s Downtown Design Review Board will hold hearings about two South Main Street buildings soon. The Courier reports the board voted Wednesday to move forward with hearings about possible maintenance violations. It will be the first time the board has held hearings about building issues.

The board didn’t publicly name the buildings in question because the board has to rule if they are in violation of the code first.

Review board administrator Matt Cordonnier filed the complaints. He says the goal is to work with the owners to improve the appearance of the buildings.

MORE: History of the Review Board

Attorney Reviewing Evidence In Hancock County Rape Case From 1999

2/14/19 – 5:21 A.M.

An Akron-area lawyer wants to reopen a now two-decade-old criminal case against a Rawson man. Attorney Adam VanHo is representing Nathan Graham in the action. Graham is serving a lengthy prison sentence for his conviction in the kidnapping, rape, and attempted murder of a Findlay teenager in 1999.

VanHo says he is basing his review on recently discovered evidence that “may form the basis for a claim of actual innocence.” Motions filed in the Hancock County Common Pleas Court do not say what the new evidence is. VanHo wants to review trial transcripts and evidence in the case.

Authorities charged Graham following an incident on February 13 of 1999. Prosecutors said others charged in the case beat a 13-year-old girl when she flirted with men at a party at a Tiffin Avenue apartment. They then took her to Graham’s house near Rawson where they raped her and eventually put her in a drainage tile and covered it with rocks.

Graham and his girlfriend came back and removed her. Prosecutors considered Graham the ringleader.

MORE: Details from the 2000 trial of Nathan Graham

Fostoria Residents Sound Off On Sunny Farms Landfill Issues

2/14/19 – 5:02 A.M.

More than 200 people were on hand at a meeting to discuss problems at the Sunny Farms Landfill Wednesday night. Representatives of Sunny Farms, the Seneca County General Health District, and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency all attended and attempted to answer questions. Ben Nutter from Sunny Farms says they are working to correct odor issues…

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However, Nutter’s answers didn’t do much to calm the crowd on hand. Many said the bad smell continues.

Dina Pierce is with the Ohio EPA and talked about what her agency is doing to try and hold the landfill’s owners responsible…

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Pierce says projects like gas extraction wells will take longer to complete. Many outbursts in the crowd made it clear that changes couldn’t come soon enough.

Representatives from Sunny Farms said they are working to comply with EPA orders. Matt Eely is the senior vice president of Tunnel Hill Partners, the owner of Sunny Farms. He said they are going to build a permanent wastewater treatment plant at the facility.

Health concerns stem from the smells created by hydrogen sulfide. Ohio Department of Health representatives said the Center for Disease Control has found no connection between hydrogen sulfide and cancer among humans.

MORE: Comments from government officials and community members