by Gary Taylor
In 2009, the Iowa Legislature passed HF 810, (now codified at Iowa Code 476.48) which created the Small Wind Innovation Zone Program. This bill permitted cities and counties to to create small wind innovation zones for the purposes of promoting small wind production. If a city or county creates a small wind innovation zone, landowners who install wind generation facilities become eligible for a state tax credit (although it is highly uncertain at this time whether the Legislature will fund this tax credit program this year). As part of the process of creating a small wind innovation zone, Iowa Code 476.48 requires the city/county to adopt a model ordinance for regulating small wind generation equipment. The ordinance was to be developed by a small wind innovation zone committee made up of representatives from the League of Cities, Iowa State Association of Counties, Iowa Environmental Council, the wind energy association, and utilties representatives. The bill required the League and ISAC to make the model ordinance available on the web. After several months of work by the committee the model ordinance is available on the League’s website (this link takes you to the League).
In a effort that was already ongoing when HF 810 was passed the Des Moines Metropolitan Advisory Council also created a model wind ordinance. MAC believes that this ordinance is better suited for use in urban areas than the model ordinance put forth by the committee. It is also available on the same League website.