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Pickerington moves forward with solar panel project
Pickerington is moving forward with the solar panel project for the water plant.
Pickerington has been working with a renewable energy company, Tipping Point, in an effort to possibly create a public-private business partnership. This partnership would provide for a supplementary solar power source made available to the city’s water plant on Diley Road.
The proposed deal would only necessitate that the city of Pickerington be a future solar power customer.
“This could accost to savings for the people to be around $20,000 per year,” City Manager Bill Vance said.
The project has been in the works since September 2010, when the service committee made a motion to authorize the city manager to write a letter of intent to move forward in negotiations with Tipping Point Renewable Energy.
“The installation of the solar panels and infrastructure necessary to provide such an opportunity to Pickerington’s water plant would call for a $3-to-$4 million dollar investment and would be paid for entirely by the developer,” Vance said.
Vance also said the developer would have to cover all costs associated with upgrades to the current power company’s (South Central) existing electrical infrastructure, which would cost about $75,000 and accommodate this potential alternative power source.
City staff has confirmed that Ohio Codes would not prohibit such an arrangement, but that challenges do remain as related to power company contracts and state utility service area regulations.
“Another 2011 Pickerington Solar Power investigation update should be available in the next few months and progress is being achieved,” Vance said.
The city council would be responsible for any final approvals and the staff would only recommend doing so if the city has no fiscal responsibilities, he said.
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