May 19, 2004

Contact: Jerry Lonergan, (785) 296-1460, or Jerry Karr, (620) 343-1607.

Governor's Wind and Prairie Task Force to discuss recommendations May 20

LAWRENCE -- Members of the governor's Wind and Prairie Task Force will meet May 20 in Topeka for ongoing discussion of recommendations for preserving tallgrass prairie and siting wind-power facilities in the Flint Hills. The meeting, from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Kansas Corporation Commission, First Floor Hearing Room, 1500 SW Arrowhead, is open to the public.

The task force is part of the State Energy Resources Coordination Council, chaired by Lee Allison, director of the Kansas Geological Survey, based at the University of Kansas. Their final report is due to the governor by May 31.

The meeting will focus on review and approval of one or more options for identifying suitable areas for development in the Flint Hills and mechanisms for steering development into these preferred areas, ranging from state regulation to a package of tax incentives and disincentives.

The agenda will be available at the Wind and Prairie Task Force Web site, www.kansasenergy.org/sercc_wptf_meetings.htm.

Created at the request of Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, the task force is charged with recommending guidelines and tools to help Flint Hills communities in the decision-making process related to the siting of wind-energy projects and preservation of the tallgrass prairie. The governor has noted that these recommendations will have application and impact on communities across the state.

The task force is co-chaired by Jerry Karr, Emporia, a member of the Kansas Senate from 1980 to 1998, and Jerry Lonergan, Topeka, president of Kansas Inc., the state's economic development research and policy agency.

More information about the task force and its activities is available online at www.kansasenergy.org/sercc_wptf.htm.

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