City Committee Takes Up Ethanol Issue

By: Laura Gibbs
By: Laura Gibbs

The Winnebago County Zoning Board of Appeals will be at it again Tuesday night. It could be that the second time is the charm and if a recommendation is made about the proposed ethanol plant the City of Rockford may soon follow. It was the first time members of the city's Code and Regulations Committee heard the facts. Aldermen were inundated with research and data from Wight Partners and “ICE”, Informed Citizens Engaged. The committee is listening and learning in order to decide if the body will legally object to a proposed ethanol plant in Winnebago County.

Alderman Frank Breach states, "We need to be careful with any new development to make sure it conforms and will not be harmful down the road."

The site along south Meridian Road is a mile and a half outside city limits. But there could come a time when the city's boundary line extends further west. After hearing from Wight and “ICE” the Code and Regulations committee decided the lay-over the issue. “ICE” attorney Dennis Schumacher tells 23 News, "We're pleased that they are interested in getting all the facts and all the information they need before making a decision. I'm hoping we've convinced the Winnebago County board to do the same thing.

Wight Partners Vice President says, "It will give us time to provide information to staff and that kind of thing. So we'll be working with city staff to provide them with further information."

The committee is seeking a report from the city's staff. Members will also be waiting to hear if the Winnebago County Zoning Board of Appeals gives approval or snubs the ethanol plant. The ZBA will be listening to concerned citizens again Tuesday night. The meeting starts at 5 p.m. at Winnebago High School.


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