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OPSB schedules public workshops for administrative rule review

The OPSB will conduct three workshops to gather input regarding administrative rules that address applications for electric transmission facilities, gas pipelines, and electric generation facilities, including applications for solar energy facilities.

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COLUMBUS, OHIO (Sept. 7, 2021) – The Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) will conduct three workshops to gather input regarding administrative rules that address applications for electric transmission facilities, gas pipelines, and electric generation facilities, including applications for solar energy facilities. The workshops are intended as an opportunity for the OPSB to receive feedback from interested stakeholders and the public before draft rules are issued for comment.

The workshops are scheduled as follows:

  1. In-person workshop
    Oct. 4, 2021, at 10 a.m.
    180 East Broad Street, Hearing Room 11-B
    Columbus, Ohio 43215
    More details
     
  2. Web-based workshop 1
    Oct. 4, 2021, at 1:30 p.m.
    Via Cisco Webex, a web-based platform that facilitates participation by telephone or video
    More details and pre-registration
     
  3. Web-based workshop 2
    Oct. 8, 2021, at 9:30 a.m.
    Via Cisco Webex, a web-based platform that facilitates participation by telephone or video
    More details and pre-registration

Individuals interested in attending the in-person workshop on Oct. 4, 2021 should register at the building lobby desk when they arrive and then proceed to the 11th floor. Consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guidelines and the May 17, 2021 Ohio Department of Health Order, in-person attendees who are not fully vaccinated should wear a face covering and socially distance.

Those who wish to participate in the first web-based workshop must pre‑register before 12 p.m. on Oct. 1, 2021, by completing the online form at https://opsb.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/opsb/events/case-no-21-902-ge-bro-wksp or by calling (800) 686‑7826. 

Those who wish to participate in the second web-based workshop must pre‑register before 12 p.m. on Oct. 7, 2021, by completing the online form at https://opsb.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/opsb/events/case-no-21-902-ge-bro-wksp2 or by calling (800) 686‑7826. 

To allow broader access, each workshop will be webcast live at www.youtube.com/user/PUCOhio.

Following the completion of the workshops, the OPSB will review the workshop transcripts and issue draft rules, taking into account the input provided. Stakeholders and the public will then have another opportunity for participation in the rulemaking process by filing formal written comments regarding the draft rules. Once all comments have been considered, the OPSB will issue an order approving final rules and directing the rules to be filed with the Ohio Legislature’s Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review.

The OPSB is required to conduct a comprehensive review of its rules in Ohio Administrative Code Chapters 4906-1 through 4906-7 once every five years. The OPSB launched this current rule review in March 2020 by holding a series of three meetings with stakeholders, including state and local elected officials, community activists and organizers, utilities and renewable energy developers, and statewide interest groups and associations. While the Board invites comments on  all rules in Ohio Administrative Code 4906-1 through 4906-7,  the Board highlights the combination of  Ohio Administrative Code Chapters 4906-4 and 4906-5, which address certificate applications for electric generation facilities, electric transmission facilities, and gas pipelines.  Further, the Board is considering implementing a rule that is specific to applications for electric generation facilities associated with solar panels.

Additional information regarding the OPSB rule review is available on the OPSB website at https://opsb.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/opsb/rules/OPSB-rule-review. There, individuals can subscribe to the OPSB rulemaking email distribution list and obtain more details about the workshops, including the list of discussion topics attached to this news release.

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The Ohio Power Siting Board reviews applications for the construction of major utility facilities in Ohio. Together with Ohio’s elected officials, citizen stakeholders, and the energy industry, the Board strives to build a strong and competitive foundation for Ohio’s future.

 

Discussion topics for OPSB rule review workshops (Oct. 4 and Oct. 8, 2021)

  1. Should Ohio Adm. Code 4906-4 (Certificate Applications for Electric Generation Facilities) be combined with Ohio Adm. Code 4906-5 (Certificate Applications for Electric Transmission Facilities and Gas Pipelines)?
  2. What additional information, if any, should be included in a proposed project summary?
  3. What additional information, if any, should be included in the project description and project schedules that are currently required by Ohio Adm. Code 4906-4-03?
  4. In regard to a proposed electric transmission line or gas pipeline, what information should an applicant provide in relation to the public interest, convenience, and necessity of the project?
  5. In regard to project siting, what information should an applicant file to support its consideration of public involvement as to the site/route selection process?
  6. For all applications, what information should an applicant file in the public docket in regard to public interaction and complaint resolution surrounding significant preconstruction and pre-operation project developments?
  7. Consistent with R.C. 4906.221 to 4906.222, what information should a wind or solar facility applicant file regarding its decommissioning plans?
  8. What information should an applicant file in regard to communications with local government contacts within a project area?
  9. What information should an applicant file in support of its compliance with environmental and aviation regulations?
  10. What information should an applicant file in regard to its planned management of noxious weeds, irrigation system mitigation, field drainage system mitigation, and storm water runoff management?
  11. What information should an applicant file in regard to its mitigation of communication system impacts?
  12. The Board is considering implementing a rule to address solar facilities.  General areas for consideration include setbacks, landscape and lighting design, perimeter fencing requirements, and operational noise.  What requirements should exist as to these issues?  What other issues, if any, should be considered for inclusion in this rule?
  13. The Board is reviewing its fee procedures in consideration of implementing a monthly, rather than completely upfront, payment mechanism.  What information is helpful regarding the consideration of this issue?