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Halifax County supervisors agree to limit concentration of solar farms

SoVaNow.com / February 08, 2018
The Halifax County Board of Supervisors on Monday night agreed to limit the concentration of new solar farms going up in Halifax County.

Acting on a recommendation by county planners, supervisors voted to amend the Solar Energy Facility Ordinance to limit the density of solar farms to only 2.5 percent of a five mile radius of all areas of the county. The ordinance previously allowed solar facilities as long as they collectively took up no more than 5 percent of a five-mile radius area.

The supervisors’ 7-1 vote came after a nearly hour-long public hearing in which local residents found themselves on opposite sides of the issue. Meanwhile, representatives of solar farm development firms asked that the existing ordinance be left alone.

The motion to amend the ordinance was made by ED-1 Supervisor J. T. Davis. Davis told the packed house audience “everyone affected is in my district.” He noted that the county has six applications on file for solar farms, with a total 11 projects expected.

“There is so much unknown,” said Davis, noting that he favored “pumping the brakes” on the projects.

Davis was quick to note that there may be some effect of solar farms on the Clover Power Plant which employs 150 people and which pays Halifax County $2.5 million in taxes each year.

ED-8 Supervisor Bryant Claiborne, who cast the dissenting vote, said he wanted to know more about solar farms before amending the county’s ordinance.

“I just feel that I don’t know enough about them yet,” said Claiborne.

ED-6 Supervisor Stanley Brandon said he does not want to give up on solar farms. “We have a lot of empty land and they generate a lot of revenue that we need.” His comments came after two landowners said they had offers for their land from solar developers and wanted to sell.

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So Supervisor Davis "was quick to note that there may be some effect of solar farms on the Clover Power Plant which employs 150 people and which pays Halifax County $2.5 million in taxes each year." I think someone should contact the SCC and FCC concerning this comment, that comment and the motives behind it wreaks of wrongdoing and corporate lobbying. Just who is Mr. Davis protecting and who is bending his ear to keep a dirty coal plant open instead of allowing clean renewable energy sources. There is something that doesn't add up here. Why wouldn't the County want taxes from solar sites with all the capital improvement needs currently facing our illustrious leaders.


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