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The City of Neligh will begin negotiating the purchase of wind energy generated from turbines located practically in its own backyard.
The Neligh City Council has authorized city attorneys Jim and Joe McNally to negotiate with Grand Island Utilities to purchase up to 8,000 megawatts of the wind energy that will be produced from Prairie Breeze III, a new wind farm that will be built north of Neligh.
Jim McNally told council members at the Tuesday evening meeting that the Power Review Board has approved Invenergy to construct Prairie Breeze III. One hundred percent of the 35.8 megawatts of energy produced from the wind farm will be purchased by the City of Grand Island.
“Grand Island has agreed to shove off some of that power to Nebraska City and to the the City of Neligh,” McNally said. “We’ll need to have a motion by this board to authorize us to negotiate with Grand Island the purchase of that energy. Of course, any agreement would have to come back to the board and city council for your approval.”
McNally said originally it appeared Neligh could negotiate for 4,000 kilowatts but that has now increased to 8,000 kilowatts.
"We think Grand Island will purchase some more of the energy that will come off the northern project, which is still in the works. The first 35 megawatts Grand Island has purchased and agreed to assign up to 8,000 kilowatts to the City of Neligh, if we so decide to,” McNally said.
Councilman Ted Hughes made the motion to authorize Jim and Joe McNally to negotiate on behalf of the City of Neligh. Stephanie Wanek seconded the motion, which passed 3-0. Dale Wilkinson was absent due to illness.
The Power Review Board approved the Prairie Breeze III project during its meeting on May 22.