Greg Lance – Watkins
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as has been pointed out by one correspondent with the Forest of Dean Council – it would be questionably a sound investment for yet more tax payers’ money!
Dear Councillor ******,I note in today’s The Forester newspaper reference to a possible investment in theabove scheme to be discussed at the full Council Meeting tomorrow.As you may be aware I and a large number of local residents are currently involvedin fighting the similar proposed Wind Turbine at Tidenham being undertaken by theResilience Centre who also built the Alvington Court Turbine. So far both the HighCourt and the Court of Appeal have found unanimously in our favour in quashing the Planning Consent. Our legal advisers believe in the face of these clear decisions, the likelihood of the Supreme Court allowing any further Appeal are very slim. Moreover the FODDC itself has now withdrawn its objections and is not supporting the appeal by the developers The Resilience Centre.Whilst I have no objection to the Council’s strategy of diversifying its treasurymanagement policy to permit consideration of alternative investments such asrenewables, I do have very strong reservations about the Council investing in anytype of individual Wind Turbine scheme proposed by The Resilience Centre, such assuggested by Councillor McFarling in the Forester article.Some basic facts as set out below, may help you understand why :–1. The Alvington Court scheme failed to find sufficient private investors in its initialfunding proposal in 2015/16 and had to resort to an expensive bridging loan forsome £600,000.2. In September 2017 the Resilience Centre sought to raise an additional £600,000via a public offering to replace this bridging loan this Offer closed in December2017.3. Clearly once again insufficient private investor interest was generated, which iswhy FODDC has now been approached by the Resilience Centre.4. The Share offer document is attached for information and you will note that TheResilience Centre will benefit financially to a material extent in the payment ofmanagement fees etc. from the scheme (pages 16 – 17).Moreover, as noted above in view of the ongoing legal discussions, I wouldseriously question whether it is wise for the Council to consider investing into anysimilar single wind turbine scheme (particularly one operated by the ResilienceCentre), at least until the Supreme Court has given its ruling on the Appeal whichwas submitted only last month.I hope that you will feel able to object to this suggestion accordingly.
I incline to the belief that the more time passes the more people will realise that using wind as a source of power is seriously unreliable in Britain and the more this becomes apparent the less the income on the shares will be & the less will be the probability of selling ones shares – the entire concept of a ‘Community Fund’ of any substance in the long run sounds little more than an unsophisticated Ponsi scheme where it will last until the founder sells their stake in the scam and the new owners are not obliged to pay out one cent!
Individuals may of course gamble their own money but I would caution it is morally repugnant for a public body to gamble public money on a scheme where clearly the very foundations are suspect even by its style, such as the pretence of the description, a ‘Community Wind Farm or Wind Mill’, whatever the apparent bribes and incentives – or even a collective guilt at having become embroilled in a Ponzi Scheme!
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