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Wheatfield government provides solar panel moratorium

Thu-19-2016 Wheatfield government provides solar panel moratorium

The Town of Wheatfield placed a six month moratorium on ground mounted solar panels and solar farms Monday night. The town board says that amount of time is needed before any additional solar panels can be installed anywhere other than the roof of a home.

"It's my money. I wanted to keep most of my money in my pocket," says Stuart Newman.

Newman had solar panels installed in his Wheatfield yard in August. At first, he said his neighbor was supportive and helped him cut down trees.

"After they were put in, suddenly it was a big issue for them that they didn't like it,” says Newman.

Newman's neighbor went to the town to get permission to install this eight foot tall fence to block his family's view of the panels and the glare coming off of them.

Monday, the Wheatfield town board approved a six month moratorium on installing solar panels like the ones in Newman's yard and solar farms. Town leaders say several farmers have expressed interest in installing solar panels as a way to make money.

Wheatfield board approves solar panel moratorium until new legislation is set out

"We can put our regulations that we feel are just and right, but we have to allow the farmers to have solar panels because this is their land. They've had their land for years," says Councilman Randy Retzlaff.

Since there are currently no laws governing those types of solar installations, a task force will spend the rest of the year coming up with some. The moratorium does not apply to people who want to install solar panels on the roofs of their homes, which is something Newman says would've cost him more money and would've been impossible for him to maintain.

"I'm a partially disabled vet. Climbing on top of a two story roof in the middle of winter to clear off the snow so they could continue making solar wouldn't be an option,” he says.

Newman is grandfathered in, so he won't have to remove his panels.

Solar panel moratorium is approved to find out new decisions

The task force is looking for public input. It will take its recommendations to the planning board. The town board will have the final say.

Source: http://ukrfuel.com/news-wheatfield-approves-solar-panel-moratori-70.html

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