OAKLAND — Senate Bill 2 that deals with setback requirements for wind turbines in Garrett County recently passed the Senate and has been sent to the House of Delegates for consideration, according to Sen. George Edwards.
A provision of the bill dealing with an adjoining property owner’s consent to a variance for a wind turbine setback requirement was deemed unconstitutional by Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler last year. The bill has since been amended, removing the provision, according to Edwards.
The word “neighboring” was added to the definition of setback distance, Edwards said. That portion now reads a setback distance means the distance measured from the base of the tower of a wind turbine in an industrial wind energy conversion system to any neighboring residential or school building in all directions.
The bill provides for a minimum setback for a wind turbine of “no less than two and a half times the structure height” in the county. The wind turbine setback requirement doesn’t apply to wind systems that have submitted a specified interconnection application to regional electricity grid operator PJM before March 1, 2013.
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