Alternative energy ordinance may take on home owner’s associationsThe Woodbury Planning Commission will engage in another round of discussion on the draft alternative energy ordinance Monday, Aug. 3, with a particular focus on a chapter that would prohibit homeowner associations from banning alternative energy systems.
The Woodbury Planning Commission will engage in another round of discussion on the draft alternative energy ordinance Monday, Aug. 3, with a particular focus on a chapter that would prohibit homeowner associations from banning alternative energy systems.
City staff will give a short presentation, after which residents, property owners, and homeowner associations are encouraged to voice their comments or concerns.
At a June 15 meeting, several people in attendance raised concerns about the role of homeowner associations as they relate to alternative energy systems. Many associations ban alternative energy systems such as solar panels in their rules. The planning commission reviewed this issue, and after discussion at a subsequent meeting, endorsed draft language that would prohibit associations from outright bans on alternative energy systems.
“As proposed, associations could regulate the placement of alternative energy systems,” said senior planner Melissa Douglas. “However, their rules could not prevent the installation of alternative energy systems or unreasonably impact their function, use, cost or efficiency.”
The planning commission is seeking comments from citizens and associations on these draft regulations before considering them for formal adoption.
Woodbury staff began developing the alternative energy ordinance last year after a request from the South Washington County School District to install a wind turbine at the new East Ridge High School. The Woodbury City Council asked the planning commission to develop an ordinance that will address all forms of alternative energy, including solar, geothermal and wind turbines.