School Committee to vote on Tilton School solar roof project

Eagle Tribune | By Peter Francis
December 14, 2016

HAVERHILL — At its final meeting of the year Thursday, the School Committee will vote on whether to construct a 73-kilowatt solar panel array atop the Tilton Elementary School, which could save the school $15,000 a year on its electric bill.

This will be the second such project the committee will vote on this year, having rejected a 2.5-megawatt solar array on Haverhill High School in June.

It was estimated that between electricity generated from the panels and the cost of the new roof would have saved the city around $10 million.

With committee member Sven Amirian having to abstain from the vote due to his employment with MassAmerican Energy — the firm that would have paid to replace the roof and construct the solar panels — the vote deadlocked 3-3 and the project failed.

Committee member Scott Wood said he will oppose the Tilton project, believing the city can spend less to construct solar projects itself.

The other dissenting committee members were Shaun Toohey and Committee President Maura Ryan-Ciardiello, Toohey’s sister-in-law.

Calls to Toohey and Ryan-Ciardiello asking whether they would also oppose the Tilton School project went unreturned as of press time Wednesday.

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