Surgoinsville residents and local leaders who object to the solar panels recently installed between Surgoinsville Middle School and Main Street learned Wednesday that it would cost approximately $20,000 to move the panels to a location behind the school w
SURGOINSVILLE - Several Surgoinsville residents and members of the Board of Mayor and Aldermen met Hawkins County school officials at Surgoinsville Middle School Wednesday afternoon to discuss their objections to new solar panels installed in front of the school.
A $7 million solar panel project was recently completed at 20 Hawkins County school facilities, paid for by private investors. They will sell electricity back to the TVA. Among those investors is Brian Bednar, president of Birdseye Renewable Energy based in Charlotte, N.C., who attended Wednesday's meeting.
Bednar said he wouldn't object to moving the panels to a location behind the school, but the issue of the approximately $20,000 that move will cost will still have to be resolved. Bednar said he would spend some money, but he also left the impression that investors aren't willing to cover the entire cost by themselves.
The solar panels were described as an eyesore and school security hindrance by local residents and officials.
The Board of Education is expected to discuss Surgoinsville Middle School solar panels at an upcoming meeting.
Projected revenue from the 20 solar sites will be $875,000 over a 20-year period, or $43,750 annually in revenue for the school system.
One-time revenue of $1,000 per site will also be earned this year as part of a TVA incentive program, bringing the total revenue for the first year’s solar production to $63,750.