Surry solar public hearing scheduled for April 1

By Terry Harris

During the March 4 Regular (Virtual) Meeting of the Surry County Board of Supervisors, Deputy Administrator David Harrison presented a Request for Public Hearing concerning Cavalier Solar LLC’s application for the construction of a proposed Solar Energy Facility in the county.

The motion to schedule the public hearing for the 7 p.m. April 1 Regular Meeting of the BOS was approved with one abstention by Supervisor Timothy Calhoun. 

According to the proposal, which is available in the board packet attached to the agenda for the March 4 meeting, the purpose of the hearing is to receive public comment on the proposed agreement prior to the board’s consideration and approval concerning the terms and conditions of the siting agreement related to the Cavalier Solar Project to be developed on a number of parcels consisting, in total, of approximately 1,341 acres “to develop, install, build, and operate a utility scale energy facility” – “a 240 megawatt (MW) solar energy facility to be located in southern Surry County, southeast of Dendron and northern Isle of Wight County.”

It further states that the proposed agreement “includes terms and conditions to mitigate the impacts of the facility including financial contributions to address capital needs of the county, and further potential inclusions of the siting agreement may include mitigation of any impacts of such solar facility on Surry County by way of financial compensation to address capital needs set out in the capital improvement plan, the current fiscal budget, the fiscal fund balance policy, or assistance by the applicant in the deployment of broadband, as defined in § 56-585.1:9, in the area.

According to the request, Cavalier is seeking “a map amendment to the Development Plan Map of the Surry County Comprehensive Plan to reflect that the property is suitable for General Industrial use”, “to rezone +4,328 acres from Agricultural Rural District (AR) to General Industrial District (M-1) to permit a solar utility use”, “a conditional use permit for a solar generation facility in Surry County”… consisting of “24 parcels which are zoned A-R, Agricultural Rural District, and will be located in southern Surry County, southeast of Dendron and northern Isle of Wight County,” and “a determination that the Project, as defined in Conditional Use Permit Application No. 2020-04, is substantially in accord with the Surry County Comprehensive Plan for the proposal to construct and operate a solar energy facility” as well as a Siting Agreement.

The public hearing is to offer an opportunity for members of the community to address the Board of Supervisors during the April 1 Meeting concerning 1) Comprehensive Plan Map Amendment No. 2021-01, 2) Rezoning Application No. 2021-01, 3) Conditional Use Permit No. 2021-01, 4) Substantially in Accord Determination as well as a 5) Siting Agreement. 

The request is available in its entirety by going tohttps://www.surrycountyva.gov/AgendaCenterand downloading the Packet on the dropdown menu to the right.   Directions for attending Virtual Board of Supervisors meetings are also in the packet.  The number for the County Office for further information or directions on how to speak during the public hearing call 757-294-5271.