Council to consider solar farm request

By: By Katelin Gandee - Staff reporter

LAURINBURG — The Laurinburg City Council will hold a public hearing tonight for a purposed conditional-use permit for a solar array on Rea Magnet Road.

The request for the permit comes from attorney William Purcell on behalf of Aberdeen Farms, LLC, the business that owns the site of the proposed farm.

The meeting begins 7 p.m. at the Municipal Building.

The Laurinburg Planning Board met on April 10 with representatives of Strata Solar, the firm looking to build the solar farm. The board voted 6 to 1 to approve the request.

The 44-acre site is in a remote location with the closest home is 1,800 feet away. The land is surrounded by four property owners, three of which are owned by Aberdeen Farms and the other is a supporter of solar arrays.

Per the Unified Development Ordinance, solar arrays must be a mile or more from facility to facility, which officials said the proposed site is more than a mile away from the nearest array.

But planning board member Ken Jackson said that according to GIS, the location is not one mile apart from the nearest array.

Strata Solar land surveyor John Davis assured the board that Strata was aware of the requirements and had measured the distance from the nearest arrays and had met the required distance and other the guidelines the city has in place.

Strata’s attorney Tom Terrell said that the proposed site will be a good use for the land.

In other business, council will also be hearing from Bryan Graham, director of Scotland County Parks and Recreation, about a recreation center.

County Commissioners have talked about partnering with the city on the project. The proposed center will have a multi-purpose room with a kitchen, conference rooms, an elevated walking track, youth activity rooms and two basketball courts that could be divided with a partition if needed.

Graham would also like to explore the idea of adding some type of water features like a small water park that would include a pool and other water activities instead of a pool alone.

Also tonight, Frank McDuffie, Jr. of the Laurinburg Institute will seek the council’s support of a family reunion for the Descendants of Mick and Phoebe (DOMAP). The reunion will be held in Laurinburg on July 12 to 15. Emmanuel and Tinny McDuffie, the founders of the Institute, were descendants of DOMAP.

There will also be budget requests from the Scotland County Arts Council and the Laurinburg/Scotland County Chamber of Commerce as well as a presentation of the second budget draft. The council will also be setting up a date and time for a second budget workshop.

By Katelin Gandee

Staff reporter

Reach Katelin Gandee at 910-506-3171

Reach Katelin Gandee at 910-506-3171