Sen. Win Stoller

Filed: 3/22/2023





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend Senate Bill 1127 by replacing
3everything after the enacting clause with the following:
4    "Section 5. The Counties Code is amended by changing
5Section 5-12020 as follows:
6    (55 ILCS 5/5-12020)
7    Sec. 5-12020. Commercial wind energy facilities and
8commercial solar energy facilities.
9    (a) As used in this Section:
10    "Commercial solar energy facility" means a "commercial
11solar energy system" as defined in Section 10-720 of the
12Property Tax Code. "Commercial solar energy facility" does not
13mean a utility-scale solar energy facility being constructed
14at a site that was eligible to participate in a procurement
15event conducted by the Illinois Power Agency pursuant to
16subsection (c-5) of Section 1-75 of the Illinois Power Agency



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2    "Commercial wind energy facility" means a wind energy
3conversion facility of equal or greater than 500 kilowatts in
4total nameplate generating capacity. "Commercial wind energy
5facility" includes a wind energy conversion facility seeking
6an extension of a permit to construct granted by a county or
7municipality before the effective date of this amendatory Act
8of the 102nd General Assembly.
9    "Facility owner" means (i) a person with a direct
10ownership interest in a commercial wind energy facility or a
11commercial solar energy facility, or both, regardless of
12whether the person is involved in acquiring the necessary
13rights, permits, and approvals or otherwise planning for the
14construction and operation of the facility, and (ii) at the
15time the facility is being developed, a person who is acting as
16a developer of the facility by acquiring the necessary rights,
17permits, and approvals or by planning for the construction and
18operation of the facility, regardless of whether the person
19will own or operate the facility.
20    "Nonparticipating property" means real property that is
21not a participating property.
22    "Nonparticipating residence" means a residence that is
23located on nonparticipating property and that is existing and
24occupied on the date that an application for a permit to
25develop the commercial wind energy facility or the commercial
26solar energy facility is filed with the county.



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1    "Occupied community building" means any one or more of the
2following buildings that is existing and occupied on the date
3that the application for a permit to develop the commercial
4wind energy facility or the commercial solar energy facility
5is filed with the county: a school, place of worship, day care
6facility, public library, or community center.
7    "Participating property" means real property that is the
8subject of a written agreement between a facility owner and
9the owner of the real property that provides the facility
10owner an easement, option, lease, or license to use the real
11property for the purpose of constructing a commercial wind
12energy facility, a commercial solar energy facility, or
13supporting facilities. "Participating property" also includes
14real property that is owned by a facility owner for the purpose
15of constructing a commercial wind energy facility, a
16commercial solar energy facility, or supporting facilities.
17    "Participating residence" means a residence that is
18located on participating property and that is existing and
19occupied on the date that an application for a permit to
20develop the commercial wind energy facility or the commercial
21solar energy facility is filed with the county.
22    "Protected lands" means real property that is:
23        (1) subject to a permanent conservation right
24    consistent with the Real Property Conservation Rights Act;
25    or
26        (2) registered or designated as a nature preserve,



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1    buffer, or land and water reserve under the Illinois
2    Natural Areas Preservation Act.
3    "Supporting facilities" means the transmission lines,
4substations, access roads, meteorological towers, storage
5containers, and equipment associated with the generation and
6storage of electricity by the commercial wind energy facility
7or commercial solar energy facility.
8    "Wind tower" includes the wind turbine tower, nacelle, and
10    (b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law or whether
11the county has formed a zoning commission and adopted formal
12zoning under Section 5-12007, a county may establish standards
13for commercial wind energy facilities, commercial solar energy
14facilities, or both. The standards may include all of the
15requirements specified in this Section but may not include
16requirements for commercial wind energy facilities or
17commercial solar energy facilities that are more restrictive
18than specified in this Section. A county may also regulate the
19siting of commercial wind energy facilities with standards
20that are not more restrictive than the requirements specified
21in this Section in unincorporated areas of the county that are
22outside the zoning jurisdiction of a municipality and that are
23outside the 1.5-mile radius surrounding the zoning
24jurisdiction of a municipality.
25    (c) If a county has elected to establish standards under
26subsection (b), before the county grants siting approval or a



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1special use permit for a commercial wind energy facility or a
2commercial solar energy facility, or modification of an
3approved siting or special use permit, the county board of the
4county in which the facility is to be sited or the zoning board
5of appeals for the county shall hold at least one public
6hearing. The public hearing shall be conducted in accordance
7with the Open Meetings Act and shall be held not more than 45
8days after the filing of the application for the facility. The
9county shall allow interested parties to a special use permit
10an opportunity to present evidence and to cross-examine
11witnesses at the hearing, but the county may impose reasonable
12restrictions on the public hearing, including reasonable time
13limitations on the presentation of evidence and the
14cross-examination of witnesses. The county shall also allow
15public comment at the public hearing in accordance with the
16Open Meetings Act. The county shall make its siting and
17permitting decisions not more than 30 days after the
18conclusion of the public hearing. Notice of the hearing shall
19be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the
20county. A facility owner must enter into an agricultural
21impact mitigation agreement with the Department of Agriculture
22prior to the date of the required public hearing. A commercial
23wind energy facility owner seeking an extension of a permit
24granted by a county prior to July 24, 2015 (the effective date
25of Public Act 99-132) must enter into an agricultural impact
26mitigation agreement with the Department of Agriculture prior



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1to a decision by the county to grant the permit extension.
2Counties may allow test wind towers or test solar energy
3systems to be sited without formal approval by the county
5    (d) A county with an existing zoning ordinance in conflict
6with this Section shall amend that zoning ordinance to be in
7compliance with this Section within 120 days after the
8effective date of this amendatory Act of the 102nd General
10    (e) A county may require:
11        (1) a wind tower of a commercial wind energy facility
12    to be sited as follows, with setback distances measured
13    from the center of the base of the wind tower:
14Setback Description           Setback Distance
15Occupied Community            2.1 times the maximum blade tip
16Buildings                     height of the wind tower to the
17                              nearest point on the outside
18                              wall of the structure
19Participating Residences      1.1 times the maximum blade tip
20                              height of the wind tower to the
21                              nearest point on the outside
22                              wall of the structure



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1Nonparticipating Residences   2.1 times the maximum blade tip
2                              height of the wind tower to the
3                              nearest point on the outside
4                              wall of the structure
5Boundary Lines of             None
6Participating Property 
7Boundary Lines of             1.1 times the maximum blade tip
8Nonparticipating Property     height of the wind tower to the
9                              nearest point on the property
10                              line of the nonparticipating
11                              property
12Public Road Rights-of-Way     1.1 times the maximum blade tip
13                              height of the wind tower
14                              to the center point of the
15                              public road right-of-way
16Overhead Communication and    1.1 times the maximum blade tip
17Electric Transmission         height of the wind tower to the
18and Distribution Facilities   nearest edge of the property
19(Not Including Overhead       line, easement, or right of way 
20Utility Service Lines to      containing the overhead line
21Individual Houses or



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1Overhead Utility Service      None
2Lines to Individual
3Houses or Outbuildings
4Fish and Wildlife Areas       2.1 times the maximum blade
5and Illinois Nature           tip height of the wind tower
6Preserve Commission           to the nearest point on the
7Protected Lands               property line of the fish and
8                              wildlife area or protected
9                              land
10    This Section does not exempt or excuse compliance with
11    electric facility clearances approved or required by the
12    National Electrical Code, The National Electrical Safety
13    Code, Illinois Commerce Commission, Federal Energy
14    Regulatory Commission, and their designees or successors.
15        (2) a wind tower of a commercial wind energy facility
16    to be sited so that industry standard computer modeling
17    indicates that any occupied community building or
18    nonparticipating residence will not experience more than
19    30 hours per year of shadow flicker under planned
20    operating conditions;
21        (3) a commercial solar energy facility to be sited as
22    follows, with setback distances measured from the nearest
23    edge of any component of the facility:



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1Setback Description           Setback Distance
2Occupied Community            150 feet from the nearest
3Buildings and Dwellings on    point on the outside wall 
4Nonparticipating Properties   of the structure
5Boundary Lines of             None
6Participating Property    
7Public Road Rights-of-Way     50 feet from the nearest
8                              edge
9Boundary Lines of             50 feet to the nearest
10Nonparticipating Property     point on the property
11                              line of the nonparticipating
12                              property
13        (4) a commercial solar energy facility to be sited so
14    that the facility's perimeter is enclosed by fencing
15    having a height of at least 6 feet and no more than 25
16    feet; and
17        (5) a commercial solar energy facility to be sited so
18    that no component of a solar panel has a height of more
19    than 20 feet above ground when the solar energy facility's
20    arrays are at full tilt.



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1    The requirements set forth in this subsection (e) may be
2waived subject to the written consent of the owner of each
3affected nonparticipating property.
4    (f) A county may not set a sound limitation for wind towers
5in commercial wind energy facilities or any components in
6commercial solar energy facility that is more restrictive than
7the sound limitations established by the Illinois Pollution
8Control Board under 35 Ill. Adm. Code Parts 900, 901, and 910.
9    (g) A county may not place any restriction on the
10installation or use of a commercial wind energy facility or a
11commercial solar energy facility unless it adopts an ordinance
12that complies with this Section. A county may not establish
13siting standards for supporting facilities that preclude
14development of commercial wind energy facilities or commercial
15solar energy facilities.
16    A request for siting approval or a special use permit for a
17commercial wind energy facility or a commercial solar energy
18facility, or modification of an approved siting or special use
19permit, shall be approved if the request is in compliance with
20the standards and conditions imposed in this Act, the zoning
21ordinance adopted consistent with this Code, and the
22conditions imposed under State and federal statutes and
24    (h) A county may not adopt zoning regulations that
25disallow, permanently or temporarily, commercial wind energy
26facilities or commercial solar energy facilities from being



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1developed or operated in any district zoned to allow
2agricultural or industrial uses.
3    (i) A county may not require permit application fees for a
4commercial wind energy facility or commercial solar energy
5facility that are unreasonable. All application fees imposed
6by the county shall be consistent with fees for projects in the
7county with similar capital value and cost.
8    (j) Except as otherwise provided in this Section, a county
9shall not require standards for construction, decommissioning,
10or deconstruction of a commercial wind energy facility or
11commercial solar energy facility or related financial
12assurances that are more restrictive than those included in
13the Department of Agriculture's standard wind farm
14agricultural impact mitigation agreement, template 81818, or
15standard solar agricultural impact mitigation agreement,
16version 8.19.19, as applicable and in effect on December 31,
172022. The amount of any decommissioning payment shall be
18limited to the cost identified in the decommissioning or
19deconstruction plan, as required by those agricultural impact
20mitigation agreements, minus the salvage value of the project.
21    (k) A county may not condition approval of a commercial
22wind energy facility or commercial solar energy facility on a
23property value guarantee and may not require a facility owner
24to pay into a neighboring property devaluation escrow account.
25    (l) A county may require certain vegetative screening
26surrounding a commercial wind energy facility or commercial



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1solar energy facility but may not require earthen berms or
2similar structures.
3    (m) A county may set blade tip height limitations for wind
4towers in commercial wind energy facilities but may not set a
5blade tip height limitation that is more restrictive than the
6height allowed under a Determination of No Hazard to Air
7Navigation by the Federal Aviation Administration under 14 CFR
8Part 77.
9    (n) A county may require that a commercial wind energy
10facility owner or commercial solar energy facility owner
12        (1) the results and recommendations from consultation
13    with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources that are
14    obtained through the Ecological Compliance Assessment Tool
15    (EcoCAT) or a comparable successor tool; and
16        (2) the results of the United States Fish and Wildlife
17    Service's Information for Planning and Consulting
18    environmental review or a comparable successor tool that
19    is consistent with (i) the "U.S. Fish and Wildlife
20    Service's Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines" and (ii) any
21    applicable United States Fish and Wildlife Service solar
22    wildlife guidelines that have been subject to public
23    review.
24    (o) A county may require a commercial wind energy facility
25or commercial solar energy facility to adhere to the
26recommendations provided by the Illinois Department of Natural



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1Resources in an EcoCAT natural resource review report under 17
2Ill. Admin. Code Part 1075.
3    (p) A county may require a facility owner to:
4        (1) demonstrate avoidance of protected lands as
5    identified by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources
6    and the Illinois Nature Preserve Commission; or
7        (2) consider the recommendations of the Illinois
8    Department of Natural Resources for setbacks from
9    protected lands, including areas identified by the
10    Illinois Nature Preserve Commission.
11    (q) A county may require that a facility owner provide
12evidence of consultation with the Illinois State Historic
13Preservation Office to assess potential impacts on
14State-registered historic sites under the Illinois State
15Agency Historic Resources Preservation Act.
16    (r) To maximize community benefits, including, but not
17limited to, reduced stormwater runoff, flooding, and erosion
18at the ground mounted solar energy system, improved soil
19health, and increased foraging habitat for game birds,
20songbirds, and pollinators, a county may (1) require a
21commercial solar energy facility owner to plant, establish,
22and maintain for the life of the facility vegetative ground
23cover, consistent with the goals of the Pollinator-Friendly
24Solar Site Act and (2) require the submittal of a vegetation
25management plan in the application to construct and operate a
26commercial solar energy facility in the county.



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1    No later than 90 days after the effective date of this
2amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly, the Illinois
3Department of Natural Resources shall develop guidelines for
4vegetation management plans that may be required under this
5subsection for commercial solar energy facilities. The
6guidelines must include guidance for short-term and long-term
7property management practices that provide and maintain native
8and non-invasive naturalized perennial vegetation to protect
9the health and well-being of pollinators.
10    (s) If a facility owner enters into a road use agreement
11with the Illinois Department of Transportation, a road
12district, or other unit of local government relating to a
13commercial wind energy facility or a commercial solar energy
14facility, the road use agreement shall require the facility
15owner to be responsible for (i) the reasonable cost of
16improving roads used by the facility owner to construct the
17commercial wind energy facility or the commercial solar energy
18facility and (ii) the reasonable cost of repairing roads used
19by the facility owner during construction of the commercial
20wind energy facility or the commercial solar energy facility
21so that those roads are in a condition that is safe for the
22driving public after the completion of the facility's
23construction. Roadways improved in preparation for and during
24the construction of the commercial wind energy facility or
25commercial solar energy facility shall be repaired and
26restored to the improved condition at the reasonable cost of



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1the developer if the roadways have degraded or were damaged as
2a result of construction-related activities.
3    The road use agreement shall not require the facility
4owner to pay costs, fees, or charges for road work that is not
5specifically and uniquely attributable to the construction of
6the commercial wind energy facility or the commercial solar
7energy facility. Road-related fees, permit fees, or other
8charges imposed by the Illinois Department of Transportation,
9a road district, or other unit of local government under a road
10use agreement with the facility owner shall be reasonably
11related to the cost of administration of the road use
13    (t) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a facility
14owner with siting approval from a county to construct a
15commercial wind energy facility or a commercial solar energy
16facility is authorized to cross or impact a drainage system,
17including, but not limited to, drainage tiles, open drainage
18districts, culverts, and water gathering vaults, owned or
19under the control of a drainage district under the Illinois
20Drainage Code without obtaining prior agreement or approval
21from the drainage district, except that the facility owner
22shall repair or pay for the repair of all damage to the
23drainage system caused by the construction of the commercial
24wind energy facility or the commercial solar energy facility
25within a reasonable time after construction of the commercial
26wind energy facility or the commercial solar energy facility



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1is complete.
2    (u) The amendments to this Section adopted in Public Act
3102-1123 this amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly do
4not apply to: (1) an application for siting approval or for a
5special use permit for a commercial wind energy facility or
6commercial solar energy facility if the application was
7submitted to a unit of local government before the effective
8date of this amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly; or
9(2) a commercial wind energy facility or a commercial solar
10energy facility if the facility owner has submitted an
11agricultural impact mitigation agreement to the Department of
12Agriculture before the effective date of this amendatory Act
13of the 102nd General Assembly; or (3) a commercial wind energy
14or commercial solar energy development on property that is
15located within an enterprise zone certified under the Illinois
16Enterprise Zone Act, that was classified as industrial by the
17appropriate zoning authority on or before January 27, 2023,
18and that is located within 4 miles of the intersection of
19Interstate 88 and Interstate 39.
20(Source: P.A. 101-4, eff. 4-19-19; 102-1123, eff. 1-27-23.)
21    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
22becoming law.".