Dear Council Members and Officials,
Solar Photovoltaic Systems and other sustainability based energy solution are key components of our future. However, their installation and placement needs to be carefully managed for safety and the community characteristics Franklin offers its residents.
Present permitting for Residential Ground-Mounted Solar Photovoltaic System installations are issued under zoning guidelines for garden sheds? This according to my conversations with Building Commissioner- Lloyd Brown, when discussing a 40-Solar Panel Ground Mounted installation at 42 Prospect Street. The installation is on the side lot of 42 Prospect Street, Franklin's first designated scenic road, the lot borders my property. Under the garden shed guidelines no screening from the road is required nor protective fencing is necessary for safety to shield children and others from accessing the energized electrical components.
The 40-Solar Panel Ground Mounted installation at 42 Prospect Street was complete weeks ago and signed-off by the inspections and building department. Now all of a sudden the panels were removed, stacked neatly and modifications are being made? Possibly to add more panels? I have contacted the inspections and building department who indicated no work should be taking place but the work continues?
|left: rework underway; right: before installation|
I urge the council, zoning board and town officials to consider specific zoning and permitting guidelines for Residential Ground-Mounted Solar Photovoltaic Systems that include; Solar panel quantity limitations, screening and setback requirements from roads and adjoining properties along with safety measures to protect children and others from accessing the electrified components.
I also encourage each of you to visit the 42 Prospect Street installation to understand the full impact undefined Residential Ground-Mounted Solar Photovoltaic Systems permitting guidelines are having on our community.