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Tyrrell planning board approves solar farm application

The Tyrrell County Planning Board on Dec. 12 approved the application of SunEnergy 1 to construct a solar farm between U.S. 64 and Saint David-Chapel Hill Road in Tyrrell and Washington counties.

Washington County planners had approved the project earlier, according to Sheryl Reynolds, Tyrrell’s board clerk.

Linda Nwadike, SunEnergy 1 representative, presented the firm’s application to Tyrrell planners on Nov. 13 for their determination whether it complies with the county’s Solar Farm Ordinance. Some changes were recommended, and the application was approved unanimously on Dec. 13, all members being present.

David Clegg, county manager, informed Nwadike then that her next step in the local approval process is to present the application to the county board of commissioners.

In a recent report to the county commissioners, Reynolds stated that the planning board approved three one-lot subdivisions in August – for Tony Sawyer, Linda R. Spruill and John and Wendy Stanton. In November the board approved a one-lot subdivision for Thomas W. Spruill.

Reynolds, whose primary duties are as assistant register of deeds, reported that she spent approximately 30 hours since her last report in various planning board activities.

Planning board members are Tony Sawyer, chairman; Butch Kirkman, vice chairman; Roger Hudson, Gail Lewis, and Steve Ralph.

Lewis, whose three-year term expires next June 30, has been a board member since 2005. Sawyer joined the board in 2015 and Ralph in 2017. Their terms end in June 2020. Kirkman was seated in 2015 and Hudson in 2016; their terms expire in 2021.

Planning board members are appointed by the county commissioners and there is no limit on the number of terms a planner may serve.

Tyrrell County does not have a professional planner on staff. Historically, the board has hired consultants on an as-needed basis.

The planning board meets in the Tyrrell County Office Building located at 106 South Water Street in Columbia at 7 p.m. on the second Tuesday in each month. All meetings are open to the public and a public comment period is near the top of each agenda.

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