Geoff Dornan

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February 15, 2013
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Man can't put wind turbine on land in Washoe Valley, high court rules

The Nevada Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the wind turbine sought by a Washoe Valley resident should be banned as a nuisance.

The ruling by Justices Jim Hardesty, Kris Pickering and Nancy Saitta affirms the district court decision to prevent Rick Sowers from building the power-generating turbine on his property.

The court agreed that aesthetics of a turbine alone aren't grounds to rule it a nuisance.

"However, we conclude that a nuisance in fact may be found when the aesthetics are combined with other factors such as noise, shadow flicker and diminution in property value," the opinion states.

Sowers told residents of Forest Hills, a neighborhood south of Reno, that he planned to build the turbine on his residential property. Ann and Karl Hall, along with Forest Hills officials, sued in district court to block construction. They argued the subdivision is a quiet area and that the turbine would obstruct the Halls' views, as well as create constant noise and shadow flicker. Another resident, a Realtor, testified the turbine would diminish property values.

The high court affirmed the district court's permanent injunction barring construction.

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The Nevada Appeal Updated Feb 15, 2013 03:09AM Published Feb 15, 2013 03:08AM Copyright 2013 The Nevada Appeal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.