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Local

Bureau County to assist BPART with remodeling new facility

PRINCETON — Now that Bureau-Putnam Area Rural Transit has a new official home in Wyanet, it's been planning a remodel to better fit the needs of its employees and equipment.

During the Bureau County Board's regular meeting Tuesday, members voted to guarantee the reimbursement of $94,289 in grant money to BPART for the remodeling plans.

According to Bureau County Chairman Dale Anderson, BPART will use the funds from its transit account to help cover the cost of the project. Once plans are completed, the Illinois Department of Transportation can reimburse those costs to the county.

Once the reimbursement is received, Anderson said, the county then will put the money back into BPART's transit account.

The county will not use any general fund money to complete the project, Anderson said.

If all goes as planned, BPART is hoping to have its new location remodeled by winter.

Bureau County prepares for construction of Walnut Ridge Wind Farm

Also Tuesday, the board approved three agenda items related to the future construction of the Walnut Ridge Wind Farm by Berkshire Hathaway Energy.

The board approved a decommissioning plan and letter of credit for the project. The letter of credit is for 106 turbines at a cost of $7,454,450 from Wells Fargo.

The board also approved a traffic impact analysis for the wind farm, as well as an engineering agreement with Willett, Hofmann and Associates to perform third-party services during construction.

Berkshire Hathaway Energy and the county have entered a road use agreement that pays for infrastructure upkeep on the county's roads during construction. The County Board will use Willett, Hofmann and Associates to perform engineering services during construction.

According to the agreement, the estimated cost for the services is estimated to be $44,600. Bureau County must pay for the services up front, but will be reimbursed by Walnut Ridge Wind Farm.

In other news, the board:

• Approved a Lone Tree Wind Farm facilitator fee reimbursement and escrow agreement. According to the agreement, LTW on July 19 submitted its wind power facilities conditional use permit application, which is pending before the Bureau County Zoning Board of Appeals. Bureau County Board has appointed Judge Timothy Slavin to serve as the facilitator of the upcoming hearings and LTW has agreed to reimburse the board in full for the amounts charged by Slavin for his services. The agreement states LTW will deposit and maintain $30,000 into an escrow account established by the board to compensate Slavin until his facilitator services are rendered.

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