Articles filed under Zoning/Planning from Indiana
More than 70 people attended a four-hour marathon public hearing by the Henry County Board of Zoning Appeals on Thanksgiving Eve, and when it was over, requests from two solar energy companies to transform hundreds of acres of land in Axton into solar farms had been turned down.
The bill, hotly debated throughout the session, would have created some statewide regulations for wind and solar projects and provided some financial incentives from developers for counties that choose to give a green light to such projects. But tough opposition from representatives of local governments, as well as grassroots citizen groups, kept pushing the local control alarm that ultimately may have led to the bill’s demise.
The Utility Committee seems to have heeded Huhn’s word. Senator Mark Messmer drafted what was referred to as Amendment Three, significantly changing the bill. This amendment grandfathers in counties that have more restrictions on renewable energy systems than the standards in the bill, like Henry County’s current wind energy conversion systems (WECS) ordinance. This amendment also reduces the noise limit a wind turbine can make to 50 db (it was higher in the original draft) and increases setbacks from municipalities and state parks to one mile. But most notably, the amendment does away with mentions of home rule, and changed the appeals process – instead of appealing to the IURC, complaints would be filed with the local circuit courts. This was done in an effort to keep more local control.
The roads in Henry County, Indiana, were dotted with signs protesting projects locals say will infringe on their rights and their quality of life: wind turbines.
During the last decade or so, counties have exercised this power in regard to wind and solar development. County commissioners in over 30 Indiana counties, such as Boone, Marshall and Pulaski, have passed ordinances that restrict or ban industrial wind. These bans and ordinances are the result of months and even years of study and public input and reflect the will of the people in those counties. ...Enter Ed Soliday, a state representative from Valparaiso, who is the author of HB 1381, which establishes statewide standards for siting of wind and solar installations. If passed, this bill would invalidate all existing county ordinances and moratoriums. The House approved the measure by a vote of 58-38 on Feb. 17, and the Senate began consideration of the bill March 1.
Nearly 60 Indiana Counties Pass Resolutions to Oppose HB 1381
A bill clearing the path for renewable energy in Indiana at the request of the businesses community has split both major parties and pitted local counties against the bill’s erosion of “home rule.” The bill sets standards for siting solar and wind farms but allows counties to permit and review the process. However, if a county denies a company that meets these standards, a company can appeal to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission.
MT. VERNON, Ind. – Officials put one more nail in the windmill coffin in Posey County. The County Commission voted to prohibit wind turbines within 10 miles of the Doppler Radar sight in Owensville.
Officials put one more nail in the windmill coffin in Posey County. The County Commission voted to prohibit wind turbines within 10 miles of the Doppler Radar sight in Owensville.
POSEY CO, Ind -- Posey County commissioners decided Tuesday to table the proposed wind turbine ordinance amendment. This ordinance would regulate how close wind mills could be built near the Doppler Radar.
The opponents got their way.
The Marshall County Commissioners imposed a moratorium on the development of Solar Farms on property within the county during their meeting Monday. While the current zoning ordinance was approved in 2007 and revised in 2017 to add solar energy system standards, there was no consideration for Solar Farms which would be greater than 10 acres.
The Posey County Commission voted on Tuesday to send the proposed windmill ordinance back to the area plan commission, opting not to vote on the ordinance. The proposed ordinance would regulate both wind farms and solar farms. Commissioners don’t believe the two should be linked together and request that the two should be separated into two different ordinances.
The Henry County courtroom filled with cheers and applause Thursday evening after the Board of Zoning Appeals voted down an appeal from Big Blue River Wind Farm LLC.
Clinton County commissioners upheld a moratorium against wind turbines Sept. 16, continuing its ban on wind farms. The moratorium has been in place since February 2017.
It’s been just about two months since the Henry County Planning Commission did not approve a wind farm request. Thursday, the planning commission members made it official: they have denied a request from Big Blue River Wind Farm.
A 3-0 vote Monday morning will keep a moratorium in place. First placed in 2017, it bans wind farms from being built in Clinton County. "I'm sure there are plenty of folks that are frustrated and disappointed, but at the end of the day we felt like this was the best decision for our county," said Clinton County Commissioner Joshua Uitts.
A proposed wind farm in Henry County won’t be built. The Henry County Planning Commission voted Tuesday night on the controversial proposal that would have added a Big Blue Ribbon Wind Farm to the area.
Commissioner John Frey says that’s because county residents don’t want wind energy, a position reflected in the comprehensive plan. “We’re going to be just fine without wind energy,” Frey says. Erin Baker ...says this ordinance does put a stop to their plans. “Not only is this disappointing, but it does have an air of finality to it,” she says.
Now the plan commission will revisit the proposed zoning ordinance when they meet again May 29. Last month’s meeting included a public hearing on the proposal with a majority of push-back against zoning, wind farm development or both. Before commissioners can consider anything, the plan commission must “sign off” on some kind of proposal, Taylor said. Five votes are needed to pass out of the commission and go to commissioners.