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Hale County sees more economic development with Xcel wind farm

From Lubbock Avalanche-Journal

PLAINVIEW - Xcel Energy is bringing more jobs to Hale County with the development of the Hale Wind Project, which received verbal approval from the Public Utility Commission of Texas last week.

Construction on the 478-megawatt project is scheduled to begin in June, according to a news release from Xcel Energy. The wind farm will create 300 jobs during development and between 17 and 22 full-time positions once the facility is operational.

Wanzek Construction, the builder of the wind farm, held a job fair at the offices of the Texas Workforce Commission in Plainview Wednesday to begin hiring workers for the project.

Wes Reeves, a spokesman for Xcel Energy in Texas and New Mexico, said the company expects to receive written approval for the project from the commission next week, at which point further plans to hire and move forward with construction will be announced.

Executive Director of the Plainview and Hale County Economic Development Corporation Mike Fox said a wind power distribution and logistics facility owned by BNSF Logistics opened in the county in 2015, but there were other opportunities for the area to enter the wind energy market.

“Yet in Hale County proper, we don’t have a wind farm,” Fox said. “All of that is about to change with this project.

“Finally we’re going to get some activity that will directly benefit the citizens of Hale County. We’re tickled to death.”

Read on…

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