No action taken on solar idea

Glenn Parrish
Booneville Democrat

The Booneville City Council took no action on an idea to go solar when it met last week.

Instead, Mayor Jerry Wilkins said he would like to have John Coleman of Entegrity Partners, who made a presentation to the council in June, as well as a Southwestern Power & Electric Company representative address the council when it meets later again later this month.

The two companies disagree on the level of benefit adding a solar array for the city might provide, if any.

“I think probably at the next meeting I’m going to try to get SWEPCO and John Coleman to present both sides of the story,” said Wilkins. “One says we’ll save a lot of money and the other says we’re going to lose a lot.”

Wilkins added it was better to be certain before making a decision.

Wilkins also asked Water Department Superintendent Larry Maness if Entegrity officials had visited the proposed site for the array — on city owned property near the sewer department — and Maness said no.

Maness was also asked if he had anything to add at the end of the meeting.

“All I’m going to say about this solar deal is we’ve had a good relationship with SWEPCO for years, from Ray Gossett days, Jerry Basham and all,” said Maness. “We don’t want to hinder anything with SWEPCO.”

“When we make the decision, we want it to be right. We get a substantial amount of money on franchise tax. When we make the decision we need to look at every piece (of data) we can,” Wilkins added. “Obviously some cities are doing it.”