Company to Install Solar Panels on Low Income Housing in Harrisonburg


HARRISONBURG, Va. -- For the first time in Virginia, people in a low income housing apartment building will be using solar energy for their utilities.

Secure Futures, a company in Staunton, has signed a 20 year solar services agreement with the Harrisonburg Housing Authority.

CEO Doctor Tony Smith said people with the housing authority approached him with plans for solar panels on the roof of that building.

Dr. Smith said it will be a way to save apartment residents and taxpayers money.

Thirty percent of the project is funded by federal tax credits and according to Dr. Smith, none of it is through state credits.

The company has installed other projects, including panels at Eastern Mennonite University.

The solar panels will be installed by September on North Main Street at the Polly Lineweaver apartment building.

There are 60 units in the building and the panels will be a total of 34 kilowatts.

Dr. Smith said the installment will offset the electric usage by almost 6 % every year.

"The public housing authority is very dependent on taxpayer funds so this is some small way in which we can contribute to reducing the burdenance of government, also creating more affordable housing with the housing authority," said Dr. Smith.

The Harrisonburg Housing Authority will prepay 85 % of the solar services for $78,000.

According to Secure Futures, the project will save $135,000 in electricity costs in 35 years.

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