A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT TO ESTABLISH A PERMITTING PROGRAM FOR THE SITING AND OPERATION OF WIND ENERGY FACILITIES.
House committee substitute makes the following changes to the 3rd edition.
Amends the definition of wind energy facility in GS 143-215.115 to mean the turbines, accessory buildings, transmission facilities, and any other equipment necessary for the operation of the facility that cumulatively have a rated capacity of one megawatt or more of energy (previously, stated that the rating is per turbine or collectively, language now deleted).
Amends GS 143-215.117 (Permit pre-application site evaluation meeting; notice; pre-application package requirements; annual review of military presence), providing that a person must request, no less than 180 days prior to the filing of an application for a permit to construct, operate, or expand a wind energy facility, a pre-application site evaluation meeting. The pre-application site evaluation meeting must occur no less than 120 days prior to filing an application for a permit to construct, operate, or expand a wind energy facility. Requires the Department to send a written notice of pre-application site meeting to various state and federal agencies and departments no less than 21 days (was, 14 days) prior to the date of the meeting.
Amends GS 143-215.118 (Permit application scoping meeting and notice), providing that no less than 60 days (was, 30 days) prior to filing an application for a permit for a wind energy facility, the applicant must request the scheduling of a scoping meeting. Establishes that the scoping meeting must be held no less than 30 days prior to filing an application for a proposed wind energy facility or proposed wind energy facility expansion.
Amends GS 143-215.119(7) (Permit application requirements; fees; notice of receipt of completed permit; public hearing; public comment), requiring the applicant to include in the application for the permit specified documentation that demonstrates that the applicant has either (1) submitted Federal Aviation Administration Form 7460-1 for the associated turbines or (2) has initiated an informal review by the Department of Defense Siting Clearinghouse for the proposed wind energy facility or expansion. Specifies additional information that must be submitted with the application if the above steps have been finalized.
Amends GS 143-215.119(c) and (e), making technical and clarifying changes.
Amends GS 143-215.120 (Criteria for permit approval; time frame; permit conditions; other approvals required), providing that, in regards to the permit decision, the Department will not be required to make a final decision until it has received a written "Determination of No Hazard to Air Navigation" issued by the Federal Aviation Administration, pursuant to specified federal regulations. Amends the provisions regarding permit conditions, establishing that the Department must require the permit holder to obtain a written "Determination of No Hazard to Air Navigation," as described above, for the proposed facility or expansion; no permit will become effective until such is received. Specifies the process and procedure for instances where an authorized turbine or its actual configuration differs from the information submitted by the applicant pursuant to obtaining a "Determination of No Hazard to Air Navigation."
Amends GS 143-215.126(b), making a technical and clarifying change.
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