Second solar company offers project to schools

Tennessee Schools Should Have Solar

“Right now, solar energy presents an excellent opportunity in Cumberland County and Tennessee,” said Randy Velker with Crossville-based Simple Energy Works. There are tax credits available for businesses and individuals installing solar generation equipment, businesses are able to accelerate depreciation on the cost of the system and the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Generation Partners program pays power generators 12 cents over retail for every kilowatt hour produced for 10 years.
Unfortunately, the school system is unable to reap the tax benefits available.
“We’ve come up with a system for someone who can capture those benefit to purchase the system and put it on your roof,” Velker told the board. “You can get into solar with someone else buying the equipment and no money out of your pocket.”
Velker proposes a 49.92 kilowatt system at 14 school sites with a 20-year agreement. Funding for purchasing the equipment and installing it would come from a third partner, TerraShares, a company that offers project planning, analyses and innovative funding approaches to attract third-party financing for projects such as this. The company worked with Hawkins County school system to install 11 solar power sites on school property.
John Adkins, with TerraShares, said, “Eighty percent of new commercial installations are funded by third parties. Why? Nobody has the money. This provides an opportunity to bring in people interested in taking on the risk in exchange for earnings.”

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