Monday, June 27, 2011

Pine Township windmill fails to generate right price online, put back on market

From the Pittsburgh Tribune Review:

Making money could be a breeze for the right buyer of a windmill Pine officials say.

Pine Township's wind generator is back on the market after supervisors rejected four bids, ranging from $10,000 to $11,100, for the triple-bladed power producer.

"If you have the right site, you could make a lot of money," said Scott Anderson, assistant township manager. "If you make more electricity than you use, you sell it (electricity) back to the (power) company."

Pine supervisors voted June 6 to re-advertise for offers on the 100-foot, 50 kilowatt Atlantic Orient wind turbine with three 48-foot blades, now on a slope in Pine Community Park.

Pine installed the windmill in 2008 "to help power the (Pine) community center and offset the electric costs," Anderson said. But the installation site turned out to be less than ideal. The windmill generates power, but "it's not a significant amount," he said.

"I'm sure there are people who question the reason for purchasing it, and that's understandable," Anderson said.

Pine supervisors originally advertised the windmill on, an eBay-style online site. When bidding closed last month, the highest bid failed to meet the unadvertised, lowest sale price sought by supervisors.

Anderson declined to reveal that price.

"We know people are interested. We've been in contact with them. That's one of the reasons we're rebidding," Anderson said. "I don't think we're going to use the website ( I think we're going to do a local ad."

Pine received about $60,000 in state funds to cover the windmill's approximately $160,000 total cost. If the township resells the windmill, it's unclear whether the township must return the state funds.

"That is a possibility," Anderson said. "We've been in contact with the Department of Environmental Protection over the issue."

Read more: Pine windmill fails to generate right price online, put back on market - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review