Tuesday, October 26, 2021
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Delaware County to place restrictions using new Ohio law

A stand of trees remains in the middle of Madison County farmland owned by Microsoft founder Bill Gates that might become part of a solar farm. Nearby Delaware County, however, is looking to take advantage of a new Ohio law to limit solar projects.

A new state law that took effect Monday gives local government the upper hand in controlling solar and wind energy projects, and Delaware County commissioners wasted no time in supporting the measure

Senate Bill 52 enables counties to set up restricted areas within their unincorporated boundaries where wind and solar projects greater than 50 megawatts would be prohibited.

Renewable energy: DeWine signs bill adding local input, additional hurdle for wind and solar projects in Ohio

Commissioners Jeff Benton, Barb Lewis and Gary Merrell — all of them Republicans —each support the law. They instructed the county’s legal adviser during a meeting Monday to draft a resolution that they could vote on to create the district.

The commissioners shared several of their concerns about solar farms in the county, including worries about their impact on development and the environment, lack of sunshine in Ohio and uncertain payoffs to landowners.

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