Garrett Harris 10:11 p.m., May 23
Planning Commission Rejects Quail Brush Power Plant
Residents were fired up at today's planning commission hearing on a proposal to build a 100-megawatt power plant near the edge of Mission Trails Regional Park.
Shortly after the meeting began, opponents of the Quail Brush Power Plant wasted no time searching for ways to defeat the project. During non-agenda public comment some accused commissioners of having a conflict of interest and of ethics violations.
The mood, however, soon settled down once commissioners began expressing concerns about the project.
Commissioner Mary Lydon questioned the site selection. "I think we need to think hard on where we are putting this infrastructure. I would like to know why this site was chosen over any other site," said Lydon.
Spokesperson for Cogentrix, Laurie Zeiber, responded. "The disturbance would be less than in the other locations," said Madaffer. "Biological surveys showed no significant, or minimal biological disturbance. The site is also close to natural gas and transmission lines. Those were some of the reasons why we believe this to be the superior site."
Commissioners weren't buying it. Shortly into committee discussion, Stephen Haase made a motion to reject amending the community plan, essentially shutting down the project.
The motion was approved by a vote of 4-to-1, with commissioner Michael Smiley the only one opposed. Now, the power company is left with only one option; to ask that the city council make the final decision.
*Correction: Lorie Zeiber spoke on behalf of Cogentrix, not Robin Madaffer as was previously reported. I apologize for the error.