The proposed solar project off Route 218 is an Alna first, Planning Board Chair Jim Amaral told the developer’s representatives Jan. 4. The board set a public hearing for 6 p.m. Jan. 25 at the fire station.
Project officials hoped the hearing – up to the board whether or not to hold – would be the lone one for the proposal the town got last fall. The board voted the application was complete; members asked for a followup email listing town rules that apply and do not apply. Amaral said it will help the board make its findings of fact.
Amaral explained, the hearing can address residents’ questions about Kennett Square, Pennsylvania-based Tangent Energy Solutions’ Alna Community Solar, LLC’s proposed 2.9-megawatt, ground-mounted array on 15.4 of Charles Ussery’s 58.35 acres. People have questions, concerns and curiosity, Amaral said.
Member Beth Whitney said Alna being in the name might make it sound like the town is involved. And members said people have wondered how the developer picked the site. Project representatives described site-picking as akin to Goldilocks, being near enough the transmission line to be affordable, but in a quiet spot, and the developer needs a receptive landowner, which Lussery was, they said. View the proposal at alna.maine.gov
Also in the Jan. 4, masked meeting at the town office and carried over Zoom, the board OK’d Arthur Jankovich Jr.’s rebuild of his burned Pinkham Pond cabin. Reporting on figures the board requested, Jankovich, via Zoom, said the cabin was 7,920 cubic feet and the proposed replacement 10,269 cubic feet, 27 cubic feet under the allowed 30% increase.
“So I think that it fits the bill.” The board agreed. It passed the proposal 4-0 and told Jankovich he will need plumbing and wastewater disposal permits.
As for the volume calculations, Jankovich said those took him back to high school geometry class. He did not enjoy it back then, but this time it was kind of fun, he said. “And you had a good reason to do it,” board member Beth Whitney said. Jankovich said it was a real life example that could help students understand geometry.
The board kept Amaral chair and Taylor McGraw vice chair and will mull secretary duties.