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Local

DeKalb County Board to reconsider 2 Cortland Township solar projects

DeKalb County Board Chairman Mark Pietrowski Jr. waits to make a point during an Oct. 24 Planning and Zoning Committee meeting.
DeKalb County Board Chairman Mark Pietrowski Jr. waits to make a point during an Oct. 24 Planning and Zoning Committee meeting.

SYCAMORE – The DeKalb County Board will hold a special meeting Monday to again consider approval for two proposed solar energy projects that recently were approved by the county’s Planning and Zoning Committee.

The special meeting comes after the committee voted, 7-0, last month in favor of the proposed 2-megawatt community solar gardens from U.S. Solar on Bethany Road in Cortland Township. The board initially sent the projects back to the committee.

DeKalb County Board Chairman Mark Pietrowski Jr. said the board is holding the special meeting because the company ran into a potential deadline problem regarding the projects, as it is looking to get the proposals submitted to the state in time for the solar project lottery bid process.

He said the board originally sent the projects back for committee consideration amid concerns about a lack of apparent compromise between the developer and affected neighbors.

“By the time of the special meeting, if we don’t feel like they have met it to our specifications, it will be something that we will likely not give a recommendation,” Pietrowski said.

During its Jan. 23 meeting, the committee addressed residents’ concerns about proper screening not being able to be achieved with the property’s
100-foot slope.

Committee members did so by requiring U.S. Solar to work with a licensed landscape architect to create screening that would block at least
50 percent of the view of the project, as seen from the first floor of each residence, for the eight affected neighbors on Airport Road within seven years.

“My hope is that the company is able to achieve the things we wanted them to achieve by [the time of] this meeting,” Pietrowski said.

Derek Hiland, community development director for the county, had said the opening date for developers to submit projects to the program’s lottery for developers had been pushed back to Jan. 30. The submission deadline for the lottery is Wednesday.

The meeting is scheduled for
6:30 p.m. Monday at the DeKalb County Legislative Center Gathertorium,
200 N. Main St.

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