Solar panels installed at schools

Niki Wolfe/Newcomerstown News

New energy-efficient solar panels are being installed in two school buildings in Newcomerstown. The West School and Newcomerstown High School will each receive the solar panels, as well as a wind turbine. It's all in an effort to save the district money. Coordinator of the project Pat Cadle said the solar panel project was just a matter of being at the right place at the right time. SolarVision LLC of Westerville wanted to install the panels on a school building and Newcomerstown accepted the idea at no cost to the district. The $1.2 million project will install solar panels on the roof at the high school and on the grounds alongside the West School because the buildings receive more than 196 days of sunlight a year and face south. The panels are actually leased to SolarVision which will pay 15 percent of the school district's electricity bill over the next 20 years. In terms of dollars, it will save the district $25,000 a year. A special ceremony will be held in September once both buildings and wind turbine are installed. Here, Jeff Bintz, lead installer from Dovetail Solar and Wind, works on installing the base of each solar panel at the West School. He is assisted on the West School project by Mike Irving and Mark Parkinson, both installers on the project.