Selectmen hold off on vote to approve bond for solar farm

By Lydia Goerner | Sep 12, 2017
Photo by: Lydia Goerner Chair Peter Teitelbaum and Selectmen Alan Slavin and Judith Whiteside consider whether to accept a bond for the Eversource Solar Farm project on Tobey Road.

The Board of Selectmen put off a vote to accept a bond for the solar project on Tobey Road Tuesday night. The bond for $418,363 for the Eversource Solar Farm project was requested for a one-year term. Selectman Alan Slavin said many people have been asking what is being done in the lot on Tobey Road.

“We’ve all received some sort of phone call asking what’s going on,” Slavin said.

Some Selectmen expressed distaste for the solar farm project.

“It will just be this fenced in thing to look at..they're not the prettiest things in the whole wide world,” Selectman Patrick Tropeano said. “We’re running out of commercial space as it is.”

But the decision wasn’t up to the Selectmen.

“Really the only thing that could have stopped this would have been the owners of the property saying no,” Town Administrator Derek Sullivan said. He said the solar farm on Tobey Road will be good for Wareham residents who don’t like traffic, but that he was hoping to see new businesses and job opportunities on that land.

Tropeano said he was disgruntled because work should not start on a project until after the bond has been accepted, and work has already begun to clear the land for a solar farm.

The Selectmen decided to wait to vote on accepting the bond until the Sept. 19 meeting. They hope to set a two-year term on the bond rather than the one year that was requested.

“That’s just in case there are issues,” Chair Peter Teitelbaum said. A longer bond term will protect the town, neighborhood and property itself, since it gives the town some leverage.

Comments (17)
Posted by: totellthetruth | Sep 13, 2017 08:26

This Town won't be satisfied till the developers "TAKE ALL THE TREES AND PUT 'EM IN A TREE MUSEUM".

Posted by: Uptohere | Sep 13, 2017 09:29

It still isn't clear to me how they got this far without anyone knowing what was happening or even word of mouth or press. This seems like a very slimy act. Don't you need permits to cut all those trees. I understand the landowner has rights but this isn't a house going up. Don't you have to submit plans before doing this. WTH is going on?

Posted by: Uptohere | Sep 13, 2017 09:37

It's all well and good to be FORCED to accept solar farms but that is not the location for such an ugly eyesore. It needs to be where it won't be seen. There must be property near the highway that won't be so visible. I have seen a few off the hwys that are visually design not to detract from its surrounding. This looks like could care less about our town.  And where is the master planner in all this. I know none of my suggestions was to destroy Toby rd with this crap.

Posted by: Spherebreaker | Sep 13, 2017 11:09

If I lived close by I would file a lawsuit. Imagine the heat that will be generated by all those black panels in the sun. It will be oppressive and affect the quality of life for those in the area by increasing ambient temps.

Posted by: Andrea Smith | Sep 13, 2017 12:18

Are there any requirements that a proponent of a solar farm in Wareham must fulfill before beginning the process of preparing land for a solar farm? What requirements is a solar farm proponent required to fulfill before beginning construction of a solar farm in Wareham?

Posted by: cranky pants | Sep 13, 2017 12:25

First people cried about coal fired power plants. Then they cried about nuclear..

Once the wind turbines came around everyone cried again.

Now solar array got everyone in disarray.

All the while people are saying we need to be green and crap like that.

Posted by: greycat | Sep 13, 2017 15:09

Good thing we have property rights.  Gives the social engineers something to ignore in their rush to regulate!

Posted by: Uptohere | Sep 13, 2017 23:48

Cranky is missing the point. Its about NOT letting just anybody decide to do what ever they want, where they want  without the people that live here having a say, even with a board that is SUPPOSE look out our town. I'm not seeing much of that lately.

Posted by: noseyrich | Sep 13, 2017 23:50

Imagine the heat that will be generated by all those black panels in the sun????? Maybe I could to down there with a plastic bucket  and bring "all that heat" home and pour it out when winter gets here! Unless "GLOBAL WARMING"  cancels out the winter.

Posted by: desertsky | Sep 14, 2017 08:59

Interesting there have been no signs or anything near the lot indicating what's going to be the end use of the lot. I live close by and have been wondering what all the tree clearing was for..they really wiped out just about everything that was standing. I've never seen anything in the paper indicating what was coming and hope they put a giant fence up so we don't have to see the ugly panels. Horrible use of a large, visible lot. Thanks again, Wareham.

Posted by: Andrea Smith | Sep 14, 2017 09:43

Interesting solar farm/ resident upset article in this week's Sippican Week:

Posted by: bob | Sep 14, 2017 10:33

ANDREA Interesting,and I don't recall this project on Tobey Road had become in front of our Planning Board,,,,Did I miss this to be on there agenda..

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 14, 2017 10:50

Solar energy itself is a good thing.  It is doubtful that anybody is against capturing energy from the sun and converting it into electricity. The issue here it the locations chosen for these ugly arrays and the in-your-face destruction visible right next to a heavily traveled road.


This was from a previous:


Solar should utilize space that's already utilized or space that nobody cares about. Alongside Rt. 24 in Randolph, they currently are building an array on top of an otherwise unusable capped landfill without objection.  They put an array on top of an otherwise unusable Superfund Site in New Bedford (near where Cinema 140 was) without objection.  Upper Cape Tech School put an array on a canopy above the parking lot without objection. Wareham Fire District put a solar array way far out in Seawood Springs without objection.  Solar is placed on flat rooftops all the time without objection.  What about Wareham High's roof? Wareham Middle's roof?  What about putting more out in the vast woods where Wareham Fire District put theirs? Out of sight, out of mind.  Wareham Fire District has a nice array out there near the wells. Nobody heard or saw the trees being cut down.  The majority of people do not care or complains about things they can't see and hear.  The Toby Road mess is where everybody drives and sees.  Very bad location!


Here's a thought for the Solar Bylaw Committee.  Why doesn't the town designate remote locations where they would welcome solar arrays? Create a "Solar Zone District" up in the North near the power lines for easy connection to the grid. There's acres and acres of woods and miles of unpaved access roads up there without a house anywhere. You all know where I mean.  Follow Charge Pond Road as far as you can. That gate is the entrance to a vast network of roads within acres and acres of undeveloped land. Some is privately owned, some public, some is owned by the utility, etc.  Anybody that's ever 4 wheeled or dirt biked knows it up there.  It's like half of Wareham's land-area. That way all developers can be deferred to a special area instead of going after the land next to my house, or the land next to your house, or the pretty land that we all drive by every day.

Posted by: barnstorm | Sep 15, 2017 08:38

Solar farm is a beautiful thing. Hey, BOS, approve the bond or face litigation. Eversource has excellent lawyers and you will lose in court and cost Wareham millions! Eyesore my ass!

Posted by: Spherebreaker | Sep 15, 2017 10:56

In my opinion this property should be sold by Eversource and twice as much bought elsewhere more suitable for a solar farm. That area is booming and everyone wants to be there with their businesss. Why waste that parcel in a prime area with a solar farm that could utilize the same sun without reducing the Towns possible tax revenue.

Posted by: rtb382 | Sep 15, 2017 17:22

Ok then how about this, get them to somehow build a lavish office building/ shopping store space/convention center and put the panels on the roof.

Posted by: cranky pants | Sep 15, 2017 20:11

That's a novel idea..

I know that putting a skating rink in town would help families from miles around.

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