Live oak City Council will be looking into using solar power for the wastewater treatment facility, pending the approval of two grant applications.
Council voted to pass Resolution 08-2013, approving for an application to be sent to the State Water Resources Control Board. The State Water Resources Control Board accepts applications to the Clean Water State Revolving Fund Program and the Small Community Wastewater Grant Program on an on-going basis when they have funding available. The CWSRF is currently accepting applications for planning and construction projects.
Now that the new Wastewater Treatment Plant is finished, the city could use these grant monies to determine if solar power would make sense financially for the city.
“We know going green is a good thing, but this would help us determine if it will also be feasible,” Finance Director Satwant Takhar said.
During the process of completing the plant, solar power was considered as a future project and therefore the groundwork was put in place. These possible new funds will determine the additional cost for installing a complete solar power system as well as its cost effectiveness both short and long term.
Councilmember Diane Hodges was interested at the possibility of solar power being used in hopes that it would reduce water bills city wide.
Later, in the same meeting, a citizen, Kris Selvidge, expressed his concern over losing Live Oak citizens to high water bills during an impromptu “Appearance of Interested Citizens” portion of the meeting.
Currently, if approved by the CWSRF, the portion of the project that the city would be responsible for is unknown. Takhar explained that the city is under no obligation to accept the grant for the study once it has been approved and that the council’s approval to send the application was the only item up for consideration at the time of the vote. The city may choose to pay the matching funds, once determined if the application is approved, and begin the feasibility study or return the funds.