Vassalboro school board joins town to buy out-of-town solar power

Vassalboro Community School. (source:

by Mary Grow

At a special meeting April 28, Vassalboro School Board members voted to join with town officials in a plan to buy solar power from an out-of-town development.

Board members had information and advice from attorney Aga Dixon, of Drummond Woodsum, who is acting for the school and town jointly. Selectman John Melrose attended the virtual school board meeting.

The main advantages cited were stabilizing electricity costs and saving around $11,000 a year – not a big part of an $8 million school budget, but over 25 years a substantial amount.

The main hesitation was over the length of the contract, 25 years with extensions that could bring it to 40 years. During that time there will be many technological changes, board member Jolene Gamage pointed out; Vassalboro might regret the commitment.

Melrose replied that many other Maine schools and municipalities are making similar arrangements.

“If we end up screwing up, we’ll have lots of company,” he said.

Gamage was not completely reassured, but she voted in favor of the plan.

Vassalboro selectmen have accepted the solar plan, subject to legal review. A final decision is on the agenda for their Thursday, April 30, virtual meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m. and can be viewed at under “Information.”


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