Solar field plans ramping up in Logansport

One proposal for a solar field that can lower electricity costs locally is in the works, and another is about to be presented.

A week ago, Logansport Utility Service Board members discussed a proposal from Inovateus Solar to build a solar panel field on the city’s west side. The land in the 1400 block of Holland Street is owned by Milt Cole of Cole Hardwood, and is primarily located within the city limits. The proposal calls for Inovateus to install solar panels on the property and sell power generated from the panels to the Logansport Municipal Utilities as part of a purchased power agreement (PPA).

LMU’s existing PPA with Next Era allows for the city to purchase a portion of its power supply from other renewable sources located in the city. If approved, Inovateus would provide power at a cost lower than what LMU is currently paying to Next Era, which has a five-year agreement with LMU. At the conclusion of the lease, LMU would have the option of purchasing the system or having it removed at no cost.

Meanwhile, a second solar proposal will be presented to the City Council Utility Committee next week. That proposal will focus on the placement of solar panels in the former Trelleborg site on the northwest side. The property is owned by the city. The proposal would allow for a subdivision approved by the city to still be built on the property.

“These are proposals that present the city and the utilities with some options that could not only lower our utility costs, but do it without any expense to the city or the utilities,” Mayor Dave Kitchell said Monday. “The other part of this is that it will increase the property tax base of the community and the Trelleborg site in particular is roughly 10 acres that currently provides no benefit to the city and is expensive for us to mow and maintain.”

The ad hoc Solar Committee which includes representatives of the city council, USB and the Mayor’s Office is expected to explore various issues related to the proposals.

SOURCE: News release from Logansport Mayor Dave Kitchell