North Powerhouse Public Meeting

Notice of Public Meeting

Re: The Bowersock Mills and Power Company Proposed Expansion

The Bowersock Mills and Power Company
P.O. Box 66
Massachusetts Street at the Kansas River Bridge
Lawrence, Kansas 66044

The Bowersock Mills and Power Company (BMPC or Bowersock) is the small hydroelectric power plant on the Kansas River in Lawrence, Kansas, which operates on the Bowersock Dam just below the Lawrence City Hall. Bowersock, known to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) as the exemptee for the Kansas River Project No. 2644, has developed plans for a possible expansion of its production through the construction of an additional powerhouse at the north end of the dam (BMPC North), with an estimated capacity of 5 MW. You have received this communication because you have been identified as a stakeholder that could potentially have interest in this proposed project, either through your employment, as a property owner, a member of a non-governmental organization, or as an interested citizen.

To undertake this effort, Bowersock must seek a new major license for both the exempted south side powerhouse and the proposed north side powerhouse from the FERC. As a result, if the major license is issued, BMPC South will relinquish its status as an exempted project and begin operation in tandem with BMPC North as a single FERC licensed project. In order to initiate the FERC licensure procedure, Bowersock has filed an application for a Preliminary Permit with FERC, Docket Number P-13526.

As per the advice of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Bowersock plans to pursue licensing through the Traditional Licensing Process. Over the last two years, Bowersock has held discussions/informational meetings with federal, state, and local agencies and regional and local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) such as the Sierra Club, Friends of the Kaw, and neighborhood associations that could be considered stakeholders in this FERC License process. To date, responses to the proposed project have been positive, which is most likely a reflection of the limited changes the new project would impose on the Kansas River Ecosystem and surrounding areas.

Bowersock has scheduled a Pre-Filing Public Meeting for August 13th, 2009 at 5:30 pm at the City of Lawrence Train Depot located at 402 North 2nd Street, Lawrence, Kansas , to which relevant Federal, State, and local agencies, NGOs, and the public are invited. The purpose of this Pre-Filing Public Meeting is to provide the public and relevant agencies with a comprehensive review of the project as well as the opportunity to ask questions and make comments on the proposed project. The meeting will provide an opportunity for a site visit, as well as a thorough description of the proposed project, including the FERC regulatory process, time schedule for licensing, design and construction, and potential impacts to the area. Bowersock staff and the Project engineers will be on hand at the meeting to answer any questions and discuss potential impacts to the region. Representatives from FERC are invited to the meeting, and their attendance will be a reflection of internal FERC schedules. Copies of the Bowersock Preliminary License Application and Draft copies of the Bowersock Pre Application Document, as well as the FERC License Application will be available for review.

Following the meeting, Bowersock will request letters from relevant agencies and other stakeholders asking that they confirm their support of the Project and approve the use of the Traditional Licensing Process as well as the waiver of the FERC required Stage 1 pre-filing consultation process and the Stage 2 field studies through a formal letter. These waivers are being requested to expedite the timeframe for the FERC Licensing process. Based on discussions with FERC as well as key regional stakeholders including the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, Bowersock has chosen to request the Traditional Process and a waiver of Stage 1 and Stage 2 of the pre-filing consultation process because it will result in an expedited licensing process in an environmentally friendly manner.

For further information regarding the FERC Licensing Process please see the FERC website at www.ferc.gov/industries/hydropower/gen-info/licensing.asp

Please find attached an agenda for the meeting which includes time and location information. If you have any questions regarding the proposed meeting, please contact Sarah Hill-Nelson at shn@bowersockpower.com or 785-766-0884. If you will be unable to attend the meeting and desire to provide written comments please send to the undersigned at the Bowersock address. Please notify BMPC of your attendance no later than August 12th via an email to staff@bowersockpower.com so that we may estimate the numbers of attendees in advance. We appreciate the community’s participation in this process and look forward to the possibility of increasing the generation of clean, renewable energy for the State of Kansas.

Sincerely,
Stephen Hill, Owner/Operator
Sarah Hill-Nelson, Owner/Operator

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Our History

 

The previous Bowersock logo was adopted from one of the mill's first flour brands, Zephyr Flour. In its earliest operation, Bowersock served as a mill and a provider of mechanical power for the City of Lawrence...[more]

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