Hearing on Gibson City solar, wind regulations continued to Nov. 19

By ROSS BROWN
bluehavanaross@gmail.com


GIBSON CITY — After an hour-long discussion Monday night regarding the regulation of small wind-powered structures and solar gardens in and around city limits, members of the Gibson City Planning Commission ended their public hearing and decided to continue it to 5:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 19, in the Four Seasons room at the Villas of Hollybrook.

Near the end of Sunday’s hearing, former Gibson City alderman Jan Hall suggested to commission members that they consider parts of a proposed amendment to the city’s current wind and solar ordinance code separately, with the portion regulating industrial solar gardens first and then residential structures separately.

Mayor Dan Dickey said the community could benefit from two proposed solar farms that the city already has agreements with — one in the Jordan Industrial Park and the other near the city’s wastewater treatment plant — by participating in a community solar program which could save residents money on their electric bills.

Dickey, who stated in an earlier Ford County Record article that he saves approximately 30 percent of his electric bill through solar panels, said some residents have tall shaded trees which would make it unfeasible for them to install solar panels on their properties.

Participating in the community solar program through the state, however, would allow residents to opt-in to have a portion of their energy bills reduced through the program.

Dickey clarified the difference between a solar farm and a solar garden. A solar farm, he said, is generally more than 20 acres in size and generates upward of 2 megawatts of power. A solar garden is generally fewer than 20 acres in size and generates fewer than 2 megawatts of power.
 

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