Illegal Wind Turbine = Jail Time....

Discussion in 'Off Grid Living' started by Yard Dart, Oct 7, 2015.

  1. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator


    A Minnesota green energy entrepreneur has been in jail since Friday all because of a wind turbine that once stood on his property.

    Jay Nygard, founder of Go Green Energy, built the 29-foot-high turbine, which has been likened to a giant eggbeater, on his Orono, Minn., property in 2010 despite being denied a permit. Nygard and his lawyer, who argue that having a 1.5-kilowatt turbine is a right -- rather than a fixture subject to zoning laws -- spent a year fighting to keep it in place.

    “My husband is a libertarian, and he has very strong views about Americans' rights to things," Nygard's wife, Kendall, said. "And if you're a property owner, you have some rights. When he sees things that are being violated, he's not afraid to take them head on."

    "How would you like to open your bedroom window every morning and have a big wind turbine block your view of your lake and the enjoyment of your home and have a strobe-like effect into your home?"

    - Rob Tennant, attorney for Nygards' neighbors

    Nygard's company makes solar panels, hot water systems and attic fans, as well as turbines that mount on roofs or stand freely, like the one he built on his one-third-acre property.

    "Jay Nygard of Go Green Energy is known throughout the local metro area as a forebearer of the energy sustainability movement," touts the company website.

    But officials in Orono, where Nygard once served as a city councilman, said the turbine was noisy, violated zoning codes and made his neighbors’ life miserable.

    “The thing was 2 feet from his neighbor's property line and 20-some feet tall,” Soren Mattick, the lawyer for the city of Orono, told “I wish there were a way for you to see the almost disco-ball-like effect into the neighbor’s front yard when this thing spun.”
    The Nygard's took down the giant turbine, which neighbors said was noisy and produced a "strobelight" effect. (Courtesy: Kendall Nygard)

    The neighbors, like the city, have spent years battling the Nygards in court over the towering turbine, which Rob Tennant, who represents two sets of the Nygards' neighbors, Pat and Nancy Walsh and Penny Rogers and Peter Lanpher, said no one should have to live next door to such a machine.

    "How would you like to open your bedroom window every morning and have a big wind turbine block your view of your lake and the enjoyment of your home and have a strobe-like effect into your home?" Tennant told

    When a judge finally ordered him to take the turbine down, Nygard, reluctantly complied -- or at least thought he did. The turbine was taken down, but city officials said the anchor bolts and even the 4-by-4 foot cement pad it stood on also had to go. Nygard balked, worried that removing the thick pad, adjacent to his home's foundation, would destabilize the house. He refused, and was hauled to the lockup Friday.

    “He was arrested, handcuffed, and taken to jail,” Kendall Nygard said Monday. “Tonight will be night No. 4 in jail.”
    A judge said removal of the turbine had to included getting rid of the cement pad it was anchored to. (Courtesy: Kendall Nygard)

    Nygard was sentenced to six months for not complying with a previous court order to remove the base. Over the weekend, his family finished the court-ordered job, hoping to spring their patriarch. Even though they took it down, the family insists there was nothing wrong with putting the towering, 750-pound turbine, which was fixed atop a galvanized pole, so close to the neighbors' home.

    “That was the best place to harvest the wind on our property," Kendall Nygard said. "We don't have a very big property. I don't know where else we could have put it.”

    The Nygards had built the turbine despite having been denied a permit, arguing that the wind turbine was similar to light poles or basketball hoops other city erect without needing city clearance. But when the city demanded it come down, answering the Nygards' refusal with a lawsuit, it also passed a new rule banning wind turbines within city limits. Although the Nygards lost on the zoning case, they did succeed in getting the city’s ban struck down for violating a state law that gives Minnesotans a right to harvest wind energy. The Nygards still have three smaller wind turbines on their property, which they believe they will be able to keep.

    Kendall Nygard said jailing her husband was extreme. Mattick said that was a judge's decision.

    “Jail isn't what the city asked for,” Mattick said. “The city asked for a court order directing him to take it down. And that's what the city got… What the court said here was: ‘You're not doing what I told you to do.’”

    Mattick added that the Nygards have a history of being bad neighbors, noting the family sued one neighbor for speaking out about the wind generator at a public hearing.

    "There's a lot more going on here than just the wind generator,” he said.

    Kendall Nygard said that suit was because her husband felt slandered, and vowed to continue fighting the city.

    “I would do it again. And it's not over -- we’re not done yet. We might have lost this particular battle, but the war's not over. And this is a war when you're putting people in jail,” she said.

    “If not my husband and I, who would step forward on behalf of our children and our grandchildren … so they all know they have this right?”

    Illegal wind turbine leaves green energy entrepreneur spinning in jail | Fox News
    stg58 and Motomom34 like this.
  2. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    while I appreciate his stand on green energy I would not want him as a neighbor. I understand the principles but he is infringing on his neighbors. If you have ever stood next to a wind turbine or a windmill, the noise and the 'flicker' effect are annoying and the flicker can give you headaches.

    IMO he is a very bad neighbor.
    fmhuff and Mountainman like this.
  3. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    It is interesting that the reason he went to jail was due to not removing the anchor bolts and the 4-by-4 foot cement pad. I think this judge was just fed up with the guy's resistance and whacked him with jail time.

    Not sure why he put the turbine up once the permit was denied and he, I assume, exhausted any appeals process. Once he proceeded without a permit..... he should have known this was going to go sideways.
    3cyl, kellory, Tully Mars and 3 others like this.
  4. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    It seems a standard case of.....

    [​IMG] ;)
  5. azrancher

    azrancher Monkey +++

    IMO he should have run an American flag up under the eggbeater, case closed...

    Cruisin Sloth and Tobit like this.
  6. VHestin

    VHestin Farm Chick

    Some people just want attention. I'd like a wind turbine too, but I'm not worried about my neighbors complaining. Because if they legally had a fit about it, I have grounds to counter-complain based on stuff they've done.
    chelloveck and Tobit like this.
  7. techsar

    techsar Monkey+++

    I stand next to a wind turbine...actually two of them...every day (and night.) No flicker, very minimal noise. Perhaps a Savonious type turbine is more annoying than a typical propeller-type design?
    My neighbors think they're "a good idea..."along with the solar panels and multiple ham radio antennas. ;)

    But to be denied a permit and then put one up in direct defiance is asking for a confrontation...and in most cases, the money wins.
  8. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    in the NW along the Columbia river, the flicker effect of all those wind turbines is having an impact on migratory animal patterns as well as human beings. The unfortunate part is, when all the subsidies go away those will be left on the spot and the companies bankrupt. So not a big fan of these as they have been used. There are area's that they work but the government subsidies they have over built
  9. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey Site Supporter+++

    Clearly the answer for this gentleman would be to move out of town and buy some acreage.. No close neighbors to complain about him.. But then, if he is a disagreeable sort he would still have issues to contend with...

    I was nice and moved WAY out of town so I would not disturb the neighbors with loud music, gun fire or loud motorcycles...
    Tully Mars, 3cyl, fmhuff and 7 others like this.
  10. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    Maybe he has Don Quixote complex, you know, tilting at windmills ;)

    I don't think he picked his battles well.
  11. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    He picked his battle poorly.... and now he is just another pillow in jail.
    Tully Mars, fmhuff and Ganado like this.
  12. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    This is why you cannot exercise any rights --you do not own property. You are slaves, working for the State and paying a tax (rent) to live on land that THEY own. You are a user, a tenant, nothing more.
  13. Mountainman

    Mountainman Großes Mitglied Site Supporter+++

    Yeah B, you should see what I have to pay each year to NOT own my land!!!
  14. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    @Brokor is right you really just lease the right to pay taxes and resell your right to pay taxes for fiat money. Just saying
    Legion489 and oldawg like this.
  15. Legion489

    Legion489 Rev. 2:19 Banned

    Well I for one think the guy got what he deserved! What, did he think he OWNS "his" property? As Brokor said, you are a slave and only rent "your" property from the state. Oh there are ways to ACTUALLY own your own property (which has been talked about here on SM), but then that requires a little work, filing the right paperwork and fighting the scum that don't want you to actually own "your" property outright so the state can't come and take it from you. Right now there is a pipeline being built across Iowa and the company wants the courts to FORCE the land owners who won't sell to let them take the land. They claim that all the farmers are eager to sell, nearly 80%, but need to the court to FORCE nearly 40% of the farmers to forfeit their land. The math sounds a little fishy to me, but then I missed out on "new" math and only had the old math where two and two is four and not some number that makes you happy. We are talking a THREE HUNDRED FOOT wide path (150 feet on each side as an easement) through the most productive farm land in the world and pumping oil (the pipes will be three feet deep) from Canada to the LA Gulf Coast. Am I the only one that sees a problem with that?! How about building a refinery where they are pumping the oil and refine it there? Oh that's right, THEY don't want the oil spills and pollution in THEIR back yard! Land of the Free my rear!
    Yard Dart likes this.
  16. Mountainman

    Mountainman Großes Mitglied Site Supporter+++

    Canada to the LA Gulf is wrong from the start...export only. Just like the LNG natural gas line that they are trying to put in through SW Oregon. Yeah, ship out our resources and buy it back from the diaper heads. [sarc1]
    Tully Mars and Yard Dart like this.
  17. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Dunno how much difference it makes if you pump crude or refined product. But yeah, pipe is pipe.
  18. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    I have never quite understood why you would not co-locate the refinery capability on the same site.
    It would seem like a cost=strategic benefit to a company to enable all processing as close to the product as possible to eliminate duplicate pathways for product getting to the market. Similar to coal or any other natural resource that has to be processed before final dissemination to the public.
    Ganado and Mountainman like this.
  19. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    they ship more than oil thru those pipelines.
    Tully Mars likes this.
  20. BailyTheFox

    BailyTheFox Monkey+

    How does one go about actually owning their land? This has been something that has bugged me for years that we have to pay taxes on what is supposedly "our" property.
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