Farmington, N.Y. – Split over power: A debate on a proposed solar farm in Farmington continued Wednesday night, as more than 100 people came out to call on the town to deny the construction.
While many are against the solar farm being built, the farmers who own the land in question are asking them, where else do they want it to go?
The meeting was moved to the town’s highway garage, in anticipation of the large crowd.
“If this thing is allowed, it’ll be a commercial enterprise taking up valuable farmland in our neck of the woods and forever change what it means to live in Farmington, New York,” argued Jim Falanga, who lives near the proposed site.
Currently, the proposed farm would span 35 acres.
Delaware River Solar says it would power 1,200 local homes, and would allow livestock to remain on the land.
“The farm is going to stay in Farmington, and the cows are going to remain on the property,” said Carol Smith, who owns the land where the proposed solar farm would be built. She and her husband would lease the land to the company.
Some neighbors are worried about their home and property values. They also fear this could open the door for more solar farms to be built on farmland.
“Everybody wants to go green, and solar is the thing of the future, and, well, it’s here now,” said Smith. “They want to go green, but they don’t want it in the front yard or side yard or back yard. We’re willing to put it in the pasture lot.”
The company’s applications to build still have several phases to go through before any official decision is made.