Representatives T.R. Rowe (R-Trumbull), Tony Hwang (R-Fairfield) and State Senator Anthony Musto (D-Trumbull) all hailed the signing by Governor Rell of critical legislation, which allows applications such as the recent one FuelCell had attempted in the Nichols neighborhood of Trumbull, to have their location changed without requiring the company to begin the entire application process all over again.
The measure was ushered through the State House of Representatives with an amendment offered by Representative Rowe and co-sponsored by Rep. Hwang and Senator Musto. The measure then passed the Senate and was signed by Governor Rell on June 11. The legislation was passed in an effort to assist FuelCell in the process of attempting to locate their proposed natural gas energy facility at another location thus preventing the proposed Nichols neighborhood site from being developed.
“This represents significant cooperation between state government, the residents of the Nichols neighborhood and FuelCell,” said Rep. Rowe. “I am very pleased that Governor Rell has signed this measure into law which will streamline the application process for FuelCell, and more importantly, allow for a timely change in the proposed facility by FuelCell out of the Nichols neighborhood.”
“We appreciate Governor Rell’s concern for this neighborhood and her hands-on approach to this problem,” said Rep. Hwang. “The passage of bill 201 is a positive culmination of the tireless and bipartisan efforts of community and legislative leaders. Our success has shown that we can all contribute to making a difference in government. I am proud and honored to be a part of that team effort for Trumbull.”
“Ultimately, everyone—from the community and local lawmakers to the governor and FuelCell Energy itself—recognized that this was not the right place for this plant to be built,” said Senator Musto. “I’m proud of the great grassroots effort that deserves all the credit for bringing us to where we are today. I’m thankful to Governor Rell for being a partner and assisting us in our effort. And I’m also grateful to the company for taking the community into consideration and, in a time when many companies are struggling, for doing what was right for Trumbull.”
The act permits a request for modification of a purchase agreement for electricity from a fuel cell project with a generating capacity of up to five megawatts that is located within 50 feet of a natural gas transmission facility operating at pressures above 150 pounds.
The project administrator can request a change allowing the project to move to another location and adjust the contract’s pricing provision to account for a change attributable to the move. The State Department of Public Utility Control has 30 days after receiving such a request to open a docket to review it, and may approve it within 120 days.
Under the act, factors affecting a modification are limited to location, contract pricing, and the schedule attributable to the relocation. An electric company cannot cancel an agreement or deem it out of compliance until the modification is approved.