April 13, 2015
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces Communities Unite For Discounted Solar Installation

TOP Governor Cuomo Announces Communities Unite For...

Neighbors Come Together to Install Solar at Up to 20% Discount; Governor Encourages Additional Communities to Enroll

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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced communities across the state have come together to bring clean and affordable solar power to their localities at a discounted cost of up to 20 percent. With 26 campaigns launching through Reforming the Energy Vision, communities can obtain solar installations as a large group rather than an individual household—making it cheaper for everyone involved. In addition, the program is helping remove many of the obstacles that inhibit solar options, such as feasibility studies and finding the right contractor.

“Solar power is helping to save money and conserve energy across the state – and one of the best ways for local communities to install solar infrastructure is to come together and take advantage of even more cost-effective rates,” Governor Cuomo said. “I encourage anyone considering solar for their home or business to learn more about our resources and join the campaign today.”

A recent study by the University of Connecticut and Yale University demonstrates the neighborhood effect solar power can have: if your neighbor installs solar, you’re much more likely to do so as well.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has partnered with 26 community campaigns across the state to encourage more New Yorkers to sign on to the Community Solar NY program. The solarize campaigns are located in Long Island, the Capital Region, the Finger Lakes, Central New York, Southern Tier, North Country, and the Bronx. They are managed by community partnerships that include local municipalities, planning organizations, sustainability groups, state legislators, business groups, and Native American tribes, among others.

The 26 current solarize campaigns are below, and more details can be found here:

  • Solarize Brookhaven: Town of Brookhaven
  • Solarize Albany: Albany County
  • Solarize the Flower City: Rochester
  • Solarize Saratoga Springs: Saratoga Springs
  • Solarize Central New York (12 campaigns): Onondaga County, Syracuse, Dewitt, Manlius, Fayetteville, Minoa, Skaneateles, Spafford, Marcellus, Pompey, Lafayette, Tully, Fabius, Camillus, Elbridge, Van Buren, Baldwinsville, Lysander, Solvay, Geddes, Salina, Liverpool, Clay, Cicero, Cayuga County, Auburn, Cortland County, Oswego County, Oswego, Minetto, Scriba, Fulton, Granby, Hannibal, Volney, Madison County, Oneida, Wampsville, Canastota, Lenox, Chittenango, Cazenovia-Hamilton
  • Solar Schuyler: Schuyler County
  • Solarize Williamson: Town of Williamson
  • Solarize Northeastern Tioga County: Northeastern Tioga County
  • Solarize the Village of Canton: Village of Canton
  • Solarize Tri-Lakes: Town of Franklin, Tri-Lakes Region
  • Solarize South Fork (2 campaigns): Town of Southampton, Village of Southampton, Town of East Hampton, Villages of Sag Harbor and East Hampton
  • Solarize Troy: City of Troy and Rensselaer County
  • Solarize Akwesasne: Akwesasne
  • Building Power: Northwest Bronx

Community Solar NY is helping to support these campaigns by providing marketing materials, a streamlined customer acquisition platform, technical assistance and funding, and by sharing best practices to help community projects succeed.

Programs like this are part of the Governor’s Reforming the Energy Vision plan, which spurs clean energy innovation and investment. Programs include the $1 billion NY-Sun Initiative, to advance the scale-up of solar and move the state closer to having a sustainable, self-sufficient solar industry, and K-Solar, which provides technical and financial support to enable public schools to install solar with no upfront costs.

Richard Kauffman, Chairman of Energy and Finance for New York said, "Communities are at the core of Reforming the Energy Vision and it is validating to see so many neighborhoods enthusiastically choose to inspire the next generation of New Yorkers by investing in clean and reliable solar power."

John B. Rhodes, President and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority said, “Governor Cuomo’s groundbreaking energy strategy calls for expanding power production systems located at businesses, homes, schools and in communities. Community Solar NY is off to a very strong start, demonstrating that communities are excited to adopt solar and to reduce their costs by working together.”

Dr. Susan Spencer, ROCSPOT, President and Founder; Solarize the Flower City, said, “Solarize programs offer enormous opportunity for education and awareness-building in the community, which gives people the ability to choose solar technology for their energy needs. This directly addresses energy poverty, and builds a community's economic potential.”

Sam Maggio, Solar Schuyler, Founder/Coordinator, said, "Solar Schuyler has ignited tremendous excitement in our community from Winery, Microbrew and Bed and Breakfast owners to homeowners, and the people who work for solar installers or who have affiliated businesses are extremely excited about the future work. In addition, our business development community sees Solar Schuyler as a viable job creator and enhancement to the local economy."

About Reforming the Energy Vision

Under Governor Cuomo's strategic Reforming the Energy Vision plan, New York State is actively spurring clean energy innovation, bringing in new investments and improving consumer choice and affordability through initiatives such as the Clean Energy Fund, $1 billion NY-Sun Initiative, $1 billion NY Green Bank, $40 million NY-Prize competition for community microgrids and others. New York is pioneering a new statewide approach, giving customers new opportunities for energy savings, local power generation, and enhanced reliability to provide safe, clean, and affordable electric service for all customers. 

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Contact the Governor's Press Office
Contact the Governor's Press Office

NYC Press Office:  212.681.4640

Albany Press Office:  518.474.8418