Commission Votes Down Coal Plant

During Wednesday's meeting in a four to one vote, the Madison County Commission signed a resolution opposing a coal-fired power plant.

Phil Castelucci, a Madison County resident, says, "I'm tickled to death they voted no against it because it wasn't going to bring any benefits to us here in Madison. They said the electricity all was going to go to Jacksonville. It'll take 2,500 acres off the tax rolls, and they didn't have to give the jobs to us."

The Jacksonville Electric Authority, partnered with two other Florida utilities, announced back in June it was looking at 11 north Florida counties to build an 800 megawatt coal-fired power plant.

The Keep Madison Clean Coalition, made of all residents, has had a petition going in efforts to convince county commissioners to just say no to the coal-fired power plant. The chairman of the commission says he has his own personal reasons for voting no.
Ricky Henderson, Chairman, says, "I've got kids and grandkids being raised in this community and I do not want to jeopardize their health. I'm really concerned about the voc's as well as the storm water runoff that could contaminate the ground water and our air quality."

The utilities consortium's main focus is on Taylor County, where county commissioners say they have been aggressively pursuing having the power plant built.

Residents in Tallahassee will vote in October on whether city officials will have a hand in overseeing the operation of the coal-fired power plant.