Solar Energy Zoning Regulations public hearing and other dates of interest

Agenda for 12/15/2020 Regular Planning Commission Meeting, 5:15 p.m. via Zoom for Morris Planning Commission members

  • Call to Order, Call of the Roll, and Approval of 10/20/20 Regular Meeting Minutes
  • Public Hearings
    Hearing on Ordinance No. 113, An Ordinance Updating the Morris City Code Chapter 11, Land Use Regulation (Zoning) Regarding Solar Energy Systems and Solar Structures, Farms and Gardens
  • C. Other Business
  • D. Adjournment

Public Notice
Notice is hereby given that the Planning Commission of the City of Morris will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community Center at 5:20 p.m. The purpose of this hearing is to consider City of Morris Ordinance No. 113, An Ordinance Updating the Morris City Code Chapter 11, Land Use Regulation (Zoning) to provide rules, regulations and standards for the placement of solar energy systems and solar structures, solar farms and solar gardens. The Morris City Council held the first reading of Ordinance No. 113 on October 27, 2020 and according to Morris City Code, any changes to Chapter 11 should be presented to the Planning Commission for a public hearing. Upon the conclusion of the Public Hearing, the Planning Commission will make a recommendation back to the City Council for consideration during their second reading of the Ordinance, to include any additions, corrections or adjustments.
You have the right to attend this public hearing and express your views concerning this request. If you have questions concerning this notice, please call the City Office at 589 3141.
Blaine Hill City Manager
Morris Planning Commission - Solar Energy Zoning.pdf (907.7 KB)

Next Climate Network meeting: Saturday 9th January 2021 at 10.30am
Next OTP Beyond Coal meeting: Thursday 14th January 2021 at 6pm
URLs for these two meetings will be shared at a later date.

UPDATE: If you would like to attend the meeting via Zoom, email city manager Blaine Hill and request the Zoom link. Blaine’s email address is


I enjoyed listening in on this meeting. It was nice to hear our Zoning Commissioners have thoughtful & intentional questions/input for the ordinance.

Here are my main takeaways/learnings:

  • Many parts of the ordinance were taken from model ordinances gathered by CERTS & The Great Plains Institute
  • Chris Watkins worked on this ordinance heavily
  • Commissioners talked a lot about that Morris is capable of having a robust tree canopy AND a lot of solar energy production- and how this is what they want.
  • Commissioners were specific on wording in the ordinance to ensure that solar does not take up all the area on a lot, just as people are not allowed to fill up their lots with sheds and garages.
  • This is a starting point to get some rules in place to allow solar.
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