Power Plant Proposed for Taylor County

Taylor County commissioners say they're doing everything they can to bring the facility to town. An electrical consortium is looking to build a coal power plant in Taylor County.

Resident Joy Towles Ezell, who spearheaded a meeting of concerned citizens Monday night, is strongly against it.

"The health effects of coal power plants are very, very bad on the residents, and we don't think we have to suffer from that. We don't think that a few jobs will be good enough for us to risk a shorter life span," she says.

County officials say it's more than just a few jobs. It's a huge economic boost, therefore, they say they'll do all they can to see that the plant is located in Taylor County.

Rick Breer, Director of Taylor County Economic Development, says, "It's a $1.4 billion project. One hundred fifty permanent jobs, real quality jobs; 1,500 to 2,000 temporary employees in here during the four to five-year construction phase."

Daryll T. Gunter of the Taylor County Commission says, "There'll be concerns on both sides of it, and we respect that. We want to see actual hard evidence in what they're talking about and what the real overall impact's going to be."

The spokesperson for the North Florida Power Project says, "Taylor County is our preference. We are talking to Foley Timber and Land Company, but we are expecting proposals from other groups."

The utilities consortium has also received interest from several other north Florida counties. The spokesman says he hopes to announce a location soon.