Monday, November 08, 2010

Solar Farms Story

The Morning Call has a feature on the issue of solar farms by Arlene Martinez (read it here). In addition to the contested placement in LNT, there is another battle in the Northampton School District. Martinez notes that Crayola installed a farm without issue in Forks.

While several issues were raised primarily around central purpose of the property, the one that was not was the leasing of public land for private enterprise. In the case of LNT it is being done in a residential area, and those residents believe their home value will deteriorate if located adjacent to the solar farm.

My complaint is the fact that public tax dollars are being provided to an out of state company to build a facility on public property and the return is about $50,000 per year in electric bill reduction. Considering the profit built into the cost of purchasing electric,  the actual cost to the company is probably a half to 2/3 the amount. I’d venture to guess if the company had to purchase the amount of land they are seeking to lease it would cost significantly more. Taken together, the private company is getting a great deal and the taxpayer and school district are not.

Posted via email from Ross Nunamaker


Wayne said...

I'm concerned about the use of school property for non-educational purposes and how this might apply to future eminent domain considerations.

If they can alter the zoning for this use what else can they do? What's to stop the school, or any gov't entity, from taking over property for the use of generating power for their facilities? After Kelo v. City of New London it's more probable than you'd think.

The Battle Cry of Freedom said...

Wayne you are correct as is Ross. Last night the good folks in Northampton showed up to stop their solar field. I belive the giant behemoth is indeed awakening