Rogers hears pitch for solar energy

by Dawn Feddersen-Poindexter

Contributing Writer

 

The Rogers City Council received a second proposal to fit some City buildings with solar panels.

The council agreed to receive a free assessment to help them decide between the two plans.

 

Solar Panels

The Rogers Council has listened to presentations from partnerships of solar manufacturers, construction workers, and financial backers for the second time in as many months.

Both presentations offered to add solar panels to the roofs of the Fire Station and Community Room, the Rogers Activity Center, and the Public Works/City Hall building at little or no cost to the City.

At their recent meeting, representatives from tenKsolar and Ameresco told the Council that they would use energy grants and their own capital to install the solar panels at no cost to the City. In return, the City of Rogers would pay the partnership for the energy produced by the panels and they promised the bill would be less than the City’s current monthly electricity bill.

After seven years, they City will be given the option to purchase the solar panels for an estimated $23,000 and can reap the benefits of their energy production for the rest of their estimated lifespan.

“We do production warranties of 90% output after 10 years and 80% after 25 years, but we think these things will probably last 35 to 40 years,” said Jim Losleben, Vice President of Business Development for tenKsolar in Bloomington.

The Council agreed to allow representatives into their buildings so they can present them with an assessment of the feasibility of the project. The Council is planning on making a decision this month.

 

Centennial Day of Service

Local Girl Scouts, big and small, took turns at the microphone, adjusting it up and down as needed, to tell the Council about their plans for a day of service to mark the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts.

They said that they wanted people to know that when debris like grass, leaves, and pet waste get into our waterways, they turn the water green with algae, making it hard for fish and other water animals to survive.

Girl Scouts and anyone interested in volunteering will meet at 9 a.m. Oct. 13 at Triangle Park to help clean up debris and stencil warnings on storm drains. They ask volunteers to bring a rake. After the clea-up is over, everyone will meet back at the park for a celebration.

 

In other action, the Council :

AGREED to build a new parking lot on land the city owns in the downtown area. The lot will be located east of Main Street, just south of the railroad tracks. The purpose of the new lot is to help with future downtown revitalizations efforts. It could also be used as overflow parking for events in Triangle Park, as well.

  • Chris Reilly, Rogers resident.

    There is a reason there are so many people eager to put in these solar panels in for the city. A reason they are willing to put up their own capital to get the project done. It is becasue they will see a return on the investment…and that return comes ultimately from the people of the city of Rogers. Not from government or Energy Star grants. I read through the entire proposal presented to the city council 2 or three months ago from one of the Solar Companies…and it was full of VASTLY overstated estimates of savings to the city. I shared my concerns with the city council.
    Solar panels are expensive, not very efficient, and don’t produce large amounts of electricity. Not to mention the fact that we don’t exactly live in the Saharah as far as sunlight availability. If solar were so great, every farmer with a couple of acres would fill that land with solar panels (apparently for free) and get a check from the Utility every month for their electricity production (yes you can do that).
    This looks to me to be just a feather in the cap of the city council so we can be labled as the next Green Step city or whatever.

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