School department presents plan to fund playing field lights

Town Meeting will be presented with a trio of articles at its fall session that make up the next step in the School Department’s plan to fund lighting for a pair of playing fields approved in the spring.

During the original presentation for the fields, Superintendent Gary Maestas said the department planned to fund the lights via a deal to install solar panels. Tuesday night, he and Business Director Gary Costin explained how that would be achieved.

The plan calls for solar canopies to be built over staff parking located behind the new Plymouth South High School and at Plymouth South Middle School. Solar panels would also be placed on the roof of PSHS, Costin said.

The department would sign an agreement with a company to install the panels and the lights in exchange for payments based on a per kilowatt hour fee. In 10 years, Costin said, the lights would become school department property.

Costin said he expected the solar panels would provide half the energy needed for the new school at a rate lower than available through Eversource. He noted the new high school uses more power than the old building.

Construction of the fields is scheduled to start in April, Maestas said. Town Meeting begins October 21.

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