2017-05-26 / Community

In the Know

LIGHTS ON — The South Portland Planning Board gave unanimous final approval Tuesday, May 23, to a proposal from ReVision Energy to build a 1,000.32 kilowatt solar array that will consist of 2,992 solar panels installed atop the city’s 34- acre capped landfill behind the public works building at 929 Highland Ave.

Project manager Josh Baston said after first supplying the pubic works complex, the array should push enough electricity onto the Central Maine Power grid to power nine additional buildings. In a power purchase agreement that mirrors a similar deal with Portland, South Portland will buy electricity from ReVision for six years and then have an opportunity to buy the solar farm outright.

Although the city is expected to spend about $31,000 more than it does per year for power during the six-year rental phase, ReVison pitched the project as one that would save South Portland nearly $3 million in energy costs over the 40-year life of the panels. However, a thirdparty study commissioned jointly by the cities predicts South Portland could spend as much as $433,000 in additional costs over the first 26 years.

Baston said ReVision will build a 7-foot high fence surrounding the entire landfill, something planning board member Linda Boudreau said the city has long needed.

“That’s right, buy a fence, get a free solar farm,” Baston joked.

PLANNING RESIGNATION — According to South Portland Planning Board Chairman Kevin Carr, board member Taylor Neff has resigned, citing time conflicts with work and family life.

With the recent resignation of Isaac Misiuk, who cited conflicts with his job at the South Portland Housing Authority, the seven-member board now has two spots to fill.

– Compiled by Staff Writer Wm. Duke Harrington

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