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Plan calls for bio-energy plant near Scappoose

Developers, city call the plans in leaked document tentative

Renewable Energy West - a limited liability company that lists Scappoose Sand and Gravel president Scott Parker as one of its principals - is tentatively proposing to develop a 24 megawatt woody biomass plant on 20 acres just north of Scappoose, within the city's urban growth boundary.

That's according to an internal draft development prospectus making the rounds in the Scappoose community.

Principals involved with Renewable Energy Northwest characterize the project as being in the early stages of development. The corporation was registered on Feb. 22, 2011, according to the Secretary of State's website.

'We're trying to pull together all the information we can to see if this is possible,' said Keith Whisenhunt, another principal on the project. He added that as far as he knew, the prospectus obtained by the Spotlight was leaked, and was not yet intended for public consumption.

The project is expected to require a $15.6 million loan to cover land acquisition, development costs and start-up costs, according to the prospectus. The development team also estimates the economic impacts as being worth $7.2 million annually due to the addition of 22 full-time jobs.

The city would be interested in the project moving forward, said Scappoose City Manager Jon Hanken. The project fits the city's goal of fostering economic development through industrial growth, Hanken said.

'It's hard to say no to something you already recommended,' Hanken said.

Whisenhunt said he doesn't expect movement on the project for another 'month to several months,' adding that the project plans may change in the future.