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VARDAMAN, Miss. (WCBI) – This week Vardaman’s Mayor and Board of Aldermen agreed to allow a company to install solar panels at one of its three water wells.

You may have heard about the 40 acres Aberdeen mayor and Board of Aldermen deeded out for a solar plant and business development project at Stinson Industrial Park.

Well, although its on a smaller scale, the town of Vardaman is also going high tech.

City leaders are turning to solar power to provide a portion of their utility needs.

Vardaman is the latest city to harness the energy of the sun to help with day to day operations.

Solar business expert Norman Griffin of Blue Spectra Solar is providing a 50,000 watt system that will produce about 90,000 kilowatts of electricity a year.

“That’s the largest size that Tennessee Valley allows under their current program. Its a TVA program thats administered by the local Natchez Trace Electric Power Association,” said Norman Griffin.

“You know just not knowing what was going to happen, we wanted to try to be sure that we didn’t put a load on folks 20 years from now when we are gone,” said Mayor James Casey, Vardaman Mayor.

Griffin apparently did his homework.

He knows the city of Vardaman uses 84,000 kilowatts each year.

With just a few modifications, Griffin’s bright idea could pay big dividends for Vardaman.

“Solar puts out DC current so you have to convert it to be compatible to the local power company to AC current,” said Griffin.

“That water well down there is our largest well and uses about little over $1,000 a month electricity and we are proposing that this panel is going to furnish that electricity for that well,” said Casey.

The solar system is a private enterprise.

It uses no grant money.

Griffin hopes to have it on line within 30 days.

“TVA pays a premium for what the output of the solar system. They also refund the current retail rate and guarantee it for ten years. So they’ve got a ten year guarantee of their payment of their rate plus the incentives that help justify the investment,: said griffin.

After that ten year period the town of Vardaman will take over operation of the solar facility.

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