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Waddington approves solar power project

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WADDINGTON — The Town Council has decided to install solar panels on town buildings, a move town officials say will save taxpayers thousands of dollars in electricity costs.

Fourth Coast Inc., Clayton, presented the board with a proposal in September to install 220 solar modules that would supply power to the municipal building, library, highway garage, old Town Hall and 10 streetlights. Installation of the photovoltaic system is estimated at $716,000.

Town board members voted unanimously Monday to move ahead with applying for funding for the photovoltaic system through the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. NYSERDA rebates $1.50 per watt up to 50,000 watts per system.

Fourth Coast estimated that NYSERDA could pay up to $228,300 for the $716,000 project. The estimated payback of the project is 13 years.

“The faster you apply for the incentive, the better because more people are starting to take use of the incentive program,” Fourth Coast co-founder Robert J. Campany said.

Because of the popularity of incentives, Mr. Campany predicted the town’s application most likely will not be approved until after January.

Moving ahead, Fourth Coast suggested the town conduct a detailed analysis of the system yield and costs and finalize component design.

“A roof-mounted system is less expensive than a ground system,” Mr. Campany said. “But you have to first determine if the roof is structurally capable to hold the system.”

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