Would you take a job that you would have to take another job to make a living? Yet, this is what many farmers do. They do this to provide food for the nation and you. I think farmers deserve our respect and to be given a break.

Right now the setbacks given by the planning commission in North Branch would eliminate 16 farmers from participating in the wind turbine project and to be given an income to support their farm. If proper zoning is given, these farmers are given a chance of providing food for us. If not… 

The following facts are from the USDA: Slightly more than half the farms in the USA have had negative farm income and therefore depend on off farm income to support their well-being. When adjusted for inflation, farm equity and assets are expected to decline this year. Yet, farm debt is expected to grow by 9% this year. According to the Commerce Department, the personal income of farmers in the first quarter of 2019 has declined by the biggest amount in three years. According to NIOSH, farming is one of the most hazardous occupations.

One final fact I would like to mention. Farmers tend to be one of the longer term residents of a community. Those who object to wind turbines tend to be much shorter term residents of a community. I believe that we need to support the farmers who have given so much to put food in our mouths. 

—Mike Buza
May 16, 2019