Rome eyes more detailed solar array legislation
ROME — Legislation to amend Rome Code of Ordinances Chapter 80 — Zoning Code in order to protect the health, welfare and safety of citizens and businesses for the establishment and construction of solar arrays within the city will be on the agenda for the next Common Council meeting to be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 28 in Council Chambers of City Hall.
Ordinance 9538, approved for adoption by the Common Council on Sept. 26, would give the council authority to amend the Zoning Code when necessary to further the public interest.
Third Ward Councilor Kimberly Rogers, Fifth Ward Councilor Frank R. Anderson and Second Ward Councilor John B. Mortise have stressed that a zoning amendment is necessary to facilitate the establishment and construction of solar energy systems within the city or the issuance of any approvals or building permits for such projects.
According to the legislation, the amendment is to be adopted to advance and protect the public health, safety and welfare of the community by creating regulations for the installation and use of solar energy generating systems and equipment, with the following objectives:
- To take advantage of a safe, abundant, renewable and non-polluting energy resource;
- To decrease the cost of electricity to the owners of residential and commercial properties, including single-family houses;
- To increase employment and business development in the City of Rome, to the extent reasonably practical, by furthering the installation of Solar Energy Systems;
- To mitigate the impacts of Solar Energy Systems on environmental resources such as important agricultural lands, forests, wildlife and other protected resources;
- To create synergy between solar development and the city Comprehensive Plan, Sustainability Plan and Brownfield Opportunity Area plans, and any other plan adopted by the city.
Rogers had previously said the ordinance would automatically be tabled during Wednesday’s meeting so that the city Planning Board would have time to review the proposed legislation. Upon the board’s approval, a public hearing on the legislation will be scheduled.
Meanwhile, authorizing resolutions to amend previously adopted legislation to include revised funding amounts for some city projects will also be on the agenda.
Resolution 106 would authorize the city to amend the Harborway on the Erie Canal capital account previously adopted through Resolution 79 of 2021 to include revised funding in the amount of $20,765 in Community Development Block Grant Entitlement monies for construction. The total amount of funding sources would be $1,574,008.
Resolution 107 would give authorization to amend the Liberty-George Demolition Project capital account previously adopted through Resolution 87 of 2021 to include revised funding amounts of an additional $24,883 in CDBG monies for a total $2,464,910.
And Resolution 108 would authorize an amendment to the Use and Occupancy Permit with the state Department of Transportation related to the Mohawk River Trail Phase II project previously adopted through Resolution 35 of 2021 to include a trailhead and parking area.
Also on the agenda:
- Resolution 105 would authorize Mayor Jacqueline M. Izzo to submit a 2022 Round 6 Restore NY Communities Initiative Municipal Grant application in an amount not to exceed $1,830,920 to facilitate redevelopment of a property located at 233 W. Dominick St.
- Resolution 109 would determine that action to undertake a certain project will not have a significant effect on the environment. The city is considering the purchase of machinery and apparatus to be used for constructing, reconstructing, repairing, maintaining or removing snow to include a crane truck not to exceed $30,000.
- Resolution 110 would authorize the appointment of the Board of Assessment Review for the city. The resolution recommends that City Assessor Joseph J. Surace Jr. re-appoint Michael Waters for a five-year term of Oct. 1 through Sept. 30, 2027 to the Board of Assessment Review.
- Ordinance 9534 would authorize the placement of “no parking” signs on the west side of Schuyler Street.
- Ordinance 9535 would authorize the mayor to execute lease agreements with Enterprise Fleet Management for the leasing of two Ford Explorer suburbans — one for the engineering department and the other for the water filtration plant.
- Ordinance 9536 would authorize the mayor to execute lease agreements with Enterprise Fleet Management for the leasing of four Dodge Durango SUVs for a three-year term for the police department.
- Ordinance 9537 would authorize the mayor to execute lease agreements with Enterprise Fleet Management for the leasing of one Chevrolet Tahoe SUV for a four-year term for the fire department.
- Ordinance 9539 authorizing the issuance of an amount not to exceed $195,000 in city bonds to finance the cost to purchase machinery and apparatus for construction and maintenance.
Also, the following work sessions of the Common Council related to the proposal of the 2023 annual budget have been scheduled: 5:30 p.m. Sept. 28 Rome Police budget review; 5 p.m. Oct. 5 IT review, 5:45 p.m. Rome Fire review, 6:30 p.m. Parks and Recreation Review; 5 p.m. Oct. 12 Community and Economic Development review, 5:45 p.m. Code Enforcement review; 5 p.m. Oct. 19 City Treasurer review, 5 p.m. Public Works review; and 6 p.m. Oct. 26 Corporation Counsel review.
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