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Oregon Republican Reporter / oglecountynews.com • Friday, December 21, 2018

| OREGON BEAT

2 OREGON Republican Reporter oglecountynews.com OFFICE 113-115 Peoria Ave. Dixon, IL 61021 (815) 732-6166 ext. 5901 Fax: (815) 732-4238 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday SUBSCRIPTIONS $39 in Ogle County, and $52 outside Ogle County. Single-copy price is $1 To subscribe, make a payment or discuss your delivery, call 815-732-6166, ext. 5320, from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday-Friday or send an e-mail to subscriptions@ oglecountynews.com. You also can subscribe online by going to oglecountynews.com and clicking on Subscribe. CLASSIFIED SALES 815-625-7653 OBITUARIES 815-732-6166, ext. 5903 vwells@oglecountynews.com Deadline for obituaries is 2 p.m. Tuesday for Friday’s edition SEND NEWS news@oglecountynews.com General Manager Earleen Hinton 815-732-6166, ext. 5902 ehinton@oglecountynews.com

YOUR GOVERNMENT

County board tables solar farm decisions 100 people attended Tuesday’s meeting, next meeting is Jan. 10 BY VINDE WELLS vwells@oglecountynews.com Several decisions on solar farms were postponed Tuesday evening after some new Ogle County Board members asked for more time to consider the issues. The board tabled voting on new solar farm regulations, lifting a four-monthold solar farm moratorium, and nine solar farm applications and set a special meeting for Thursday, Jan. 10 to consider all those issues in depth. Approximately 100 people attended the meeting. Board members Todd McLester, of Byron, and Lloyd Droege, of Rochelle, who were elected to the board Nov. 6, both said they need more to consider the new solar farms regulations developed by an ad hoc committee before voting on them. Benjamin Youman, of Davis Junction, who was also elected Nov. 6, asked for

the board to hold a meeting to “debate and discuss” the regulations before a decision is made. “There’s some critical issues were should discuss,” he said. However, newly-elected board member Susie Corbitt, of Polo, was ready to vote. “They were in our packets, and I have gone through them,” she said. Board member Lyle Hopkins, of Polo, urged the board to get the issue settled. “These are recommendations for the ZBA [Zoning Board of Appeals] to look at,” he said. “I think we can go ahead and vote on it. I don’t know why we’re stalling and kicking the can down the road.”  Board member Tom Smith, of Rochelle, said he has reservations about renewable energy because it sometimes involves absentee landlords. “This is something the government wants us to do and they want a place to put them put up,” he said. He said the land should be protected for future generations. “I think rooftops are better revenue than solar farms,” Smith said. The board had already tabled a repeal of the moratorium in November to allow board members more time to consider

the ad hoc committee’s recommendations. After approving three solar farms, the board set the moratorium on Aug. 21 to allow time to draw up regulations to govern them for the zoning code. The ad hoc committee was then appointed for that purpose. Four of the nine special use permit applications to allow solar farms came from Marion Township, two from Mt. Morris Township, and one each from Scott, Buffalo, and Oregon-Nashua. Even if the permits are approved, actually getting a solar farm is not guaranteed. Several solar companies have been actively seeking sites for projects since the Illinois Future Energy Jobs Act was approved almost two years ago. Which solar projects are successful through IFEJA will be determined by a state lottery with a Jan. 15 deadline. To be eligible for the lottery, projects must have local government authorization and a connection to the electric power grid. Ogle County Zoning Administrator Mike Reibel said approximately 30 percent of the submitted projects are expected to be chosen in the blind drawing.

Singing Along

Editor Vinde Wells 815-732-6166, ext. 5903 vwells@oglecountynews.com Advertising Sales Lori Walker 815-625-3600, Ext. 5623 lwalker@oglecountynews.com Oregon Republican Reporter, Ogle County News and oglecountynews.com are a division of Shaw Media. Ogle County Newspapers also prints the Mt. Morris Times, Forreston Journal, and Polo’s Tri-County Press. The OREGON REPUBLICAN REPORTER (USPS No. 411-420) is published weekly by B.F. Shaw Printing Co., Shaw Media. Periodical postage paid at Oregon, Illinois, 61061. POSTMASTER Send address changes to OGLE REPUBLICAN REPORTER, P.O. Box 8, Oregon, IL 61061. Phone 815-732-6166, ext. 5306. All rights reserved. Copyright 2018

Isabella Hernandez, 4, of Mt. Morris, sings along with one of the Christmas songs during the Oregon Elementary School’s Fifth and Sixth Grade Band/ Choir Christmas Concert on Dec. 13. Photo by Earleen Hinton

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