Beg your pardon? We think local control means property owners making their own decisions whether to waive state minimum setbacks. HB 190 takes this existing right of the property owner away. It puts all of the control into the hands of 3 county commissioners. People who are elected and who ‘could’ be persuaded and influenced by the BigWind industry. If Burkley really wanted to help the people of Ohio, he would have included the ability of County Commissioner’s to lengthen setbacks not shorten them. Apparently, they are unaware of all the problems of BigWind neighbors in various states, other countries, and Van Wert!….
In the early 1980s, northwest Ohio saw a boom in interest in alternative energy, mostly wind energy…
Then in early 2014 it came to a screeching halt with the passage of new setback requirements in Ohio….But on May 6, State Rep. Tony Burkley (R-Paulding) and Rep Tim W. Brown (R-Bowling Green) introduced House Bill 190 in the Statehouse. This bill would allow changes to be made if approved by local county officials.
“It’s just in its early stages yet,” Burkley told the Times Bulletin. “It’s had only one hearing and that was sponsor testimony. We’ve not had a second hearing to get the industry’s take on it.”
Burkley indicated that, if approved, the legislation would open the door for the wind industry.
“My whole goal with the bill is to put a little more local control into the decision-making process of the wind energy segment of renewable energy,” he said. “Basically, all the bill does is extend the payment in lieu of taxes option which expires in 2016, and this bill would extend that for five years, so that would give the commissioners the option of whether or not to enter into that alternative energy zone or these kinds of projects….
The bill is also aimed at giving control of setback regulation to county commissioners provided the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) does not object to the changes.
“It would also give the commissioner the option of staying with the current setbacks or revert back to what they were before the last General Assembly,” Burkley summarized….