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Council to introduce zoning measure expanding solar production on Feb. 13 at 1 p.m.

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Council to introduce zoning measure expanding

solar production on Feb. 13 at 1 p.m.

Also on Feb. 13: Introduction of zoning measure on placement of telecommunication antennas, votes on spending affordability guidelines and Energized Public Spaces Functional Master Plan

 

ROCKVILLE, Md., Feb. 12, 2018—The Montgomery County Council will introduce two zoning measures on Tuesday, February 13. Zoning Text Amendment (ZTA) 18-01, Solar Collection System – Standards, would provide more opportunities to expand solar production. ZTA 18-02, Telecommunications Towers – Limited Use, proposes new zoning standards for antennas. The Council meeting will begin at 1 p.m. in the Third Floor Council Hearing Room.

 

ZTA 18-01, Solar Collection System – Standards, is sponsored by Councilmember Tom Hucker, who serves as lead for Environment on the Council’s Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment Committee, and Councilmember George Leventhal. The ZTA is co-sponsored by Councilmember Marc Elrich. Community solar offers the benefit of solar to those who cannot, or prefer not to, install solar panels on their homes. These projects enable individuals, businesses or organizations to purchase or lease a share in a community solar project. The ZTA includes standards to prevent glare and to buffer the facility from surrounding land uses. Maryland has a statewide goal to reach 25 percent renewable energy sources by 2020. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for April 3 at 1:30 p.m.

 

The staff report can be viewed at: https://goo.gl/kkDQxt

 

ZTA 18-02, Telecommunications Towers – Limited Use, is sponsored by Council President Hans Riemer at the request of the County Executive. ZTA 18-02 proposes new zoning changes for antennas. The proposed changes are mostly focused on non-residential areas of the County.

 

The cellular industry has mounted efforts to preempt County authority in this area. It is the County’s goal to continue to regulate any future zoning changes associated with telecommunication antennas. A public hearing is tentatively scheduled for March 20 at 7:30 p.m.

 

The staff report can be viewed at: https://goo.gl/PdKM7d

 

The Council also will vote on the Spending Affordability Guidelines for the Fiscal Year 2019 Operating Budget.

 

The staff report can be viewed at: https://goo.gl/b2kcSm

 

Lastly, the Council will have a discussion and then vote on the Energy Spaces Functional Master Plan (EPS FMP). The main purpose of the EPS FMP is to create outdoor spaces for people of all ages, ethnicities, and incomes to meet, play, relax, exercise and enjoy nature in areas where more people live and work. These parks and open spaces will integrate the public network of streets, transit and other infrastructure, creating a framework around which sustainable future development can occur. This non-traditional master plan identifies areas in the County with the highest need for parks and open spaces and recommends opportunities to increase the number of parks and amount of open space.

 

The staff report can be viewed at: https://goo.gl/ZBm5Bw

 

The Council meeting and public hearings will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM). The channel can be viewed on Cable Channels 996 (high definition) and 6 (standard definition) on Comcast; Channels 1056 (HD) and 6 (SD) on RCN; and Channel 30 on Verizon.

 

The Council meeting also will be available live via streaming through the Council web site at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/COUNCIL/ondemand/index.html .

 

 

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Release ID: 18-042
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 2407777926