LEEDCo, Lake Erie-bordering counties sign agreement in offshore wind project

Cleveland, May 27, 2011 LEEDCo, the non-profit, private corporation spearheading the development of a Lake Erie wind farm, and its four-county members Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Lake and Lorain signed a revenue-sharing agreement that will give each county a percentage of income generated by the annual submerged land lease payment.

The boundaries for each of the four counties extend into Lake Erie. The revenue-sharing agreement will help foster a unified, regional approach to the development of the initial project — a five-turbine, 20 MW wind farm — and future offshore wind projects in Lake Erie.

Earlier this year, LEEDCo secured a submerged land lease option from the Ohio Department of Natural Resource, the regulating authority of the Lake Erie waters. The option designates nine square miles off the shores of downtown Cleveland.

Once the submerged land lease is signed, LEEDCo will make annual payments to the state of Ohio, roughly totaling $11,000 per turbine, or $55,000.

The state will return half of the revenue to the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority who will keep 40 percent. The Port Authority is responsible for re-distributing the remaining 60 percent according to the revenue sharing formula evenly divided among Ashtabula, Lake and Lorain counties.

Upon completion of a five-year period, LEEDCo’s Allocation Committee, which includes members from each county, will review the formula and determine future agreements. The agreement is only bound to the initial project scheduled for Cuyahoga County’s jurisdictional waters.

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