Summary of the special meeting of the Tate Township trustees held August 3, 2023.
Trustees Gary Reed, Bob Redden, and John Wilson and Fiscal Officer Kathy Brannock were present for the meeting. The meeting was held to update the public on the progress of the Solar and Wind Energy Zoning Regulations. The trustees answered questions and heard residents’ comments. The trustees do not yet have a final draft and did not take any action at the meeting.
Some of the information from the trustees about their work on the Solar and Wind Energy Zoning Regulations:
- Why are we revising our zoning regulations? – The revised zoning regulations to include solar and wind energy are a result of HB 501 (effective 4/6/2023) that includes “…in reference to Ohio RC 519.213 to subject small solar facilities to local regulations. Small solar facilities means solar panels and associate facilities with a single interconnection to the electrical grid and designed for, or capable of, operation at an aggregate capacity of less than fifty megawatts.”
- Does Nestlewood have to abide by the new Tate Township zoning regulations? – The 610 acre Nestlewood solar farm located partly in Tate Township and mostly in Brown County is grandfathered in to go by their own rules, but any plans to grow their facilities, (no addition applications have been applied for) would have to meet the Tate Township Wind and Solar Zoning Regulations.
- Why didn’t someone stop the solar farm?– The townships in Ohio were not given any authority to approve or veto the utility-scale solar farms until Senate Bill 52 was approved. After SB 52 ( effective 10/8/2022), the Board of Clermont County Commissioners are now able to take into account each township’s stance on utility-scaled alternative energy facilities. “…to permit a board of county commissioners to prevent power siting board certification of certain wind and solar facilities,” Trustee Gary Reed has filed the needed letter to let the County know that Tate does not want any more utility-scale solar farms.
- Why didn’t someone tell us about the solar farm? – The current solar project, now owned by Nestlewood made the required 3 notices to the public by sending out letters to local residents on 10/17/2018, on 3/21/2019, and again on 4/18/2019. The letters informed the local residents and gave notice of meetings that were held at various locations. Public notices were placed in the Clermont Sun and the News Democrat at the time. More public information is available by searching online for Case# 18-1546-EL-BGN: Nestlewood Solar Facility or follow this LINK.