A local community is fighting against a solar farm right in the middle of town.
The town proposed a law on Tuesday that asks the state to revise the development of the solar panels to protect the interest of the town and its residents.
“It changes the whole character of the area,” Christine Martin, Saving Greene member, said. “It destroys a lot of prime farm land. We have some of the best farm lands in the county right now, and it’s all being covered with solar panels.”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Public Service Commission recently mandated that 50 percent of the state’s power be generated by renewable sources by the year 2030. A 3,500-acre solar development spread into nine different sections throughout the town of Coxsackie is being proposed.
But there’s one section many are arguing against – a 933 acre lot with over 120 homes surrounding it.
“The devaluation of homes will overall affect the tax base to the community as well as ruin the incredible bucolic feel that this is in,” resident Kim Rose said.
But not everyone would agree on not having the solar panels.
“First of all, it’s renewable energy, and second of all, by avoiding other forms of use of the properties of the farm, and if you put solar on the farms, you will have less runoff into Sleepy Hollow Lake,” realtor and homeowner Mary Garvey said.
Garvey lives right along one of the proposed acreages for a solar plant. She said the addition of the solar panels will allow the soil to maintain making it easier for farmers to grow their crops.
To get the solar plants up and running in Coxsackie, the governor is urging the legislature to enact Article 10 of the Public Service Law, which would supersede all local laws.
Residents said they are still pushing to have their voices heard because within the Article 10, there is an oversight board that will honor local laws.
Another meeting on the subject is set to take place at 7 p.m. on Wednesday at the Coxsackie Elementary School cafeteria.