Council looks to future of solar power

By Sandy Rose Schwieterman - For the Sidney Daily News

NEW BREMEN – New Bremen Council looked toward the future of solar power as well as accepted a bid to replace a treatment plant filter at the meeting Monday night, March 8. Also, the way was cleared to interview for a new park manager.

The first reading was approved for an ordinance to limit the amount of solar electricity coming from individual homes. Titled the Behind The Meter (BTM), the ordinance would limit the amount of electricity coming to the village electrical grid.

The ordinance would limit the maximum alternating current rating of a residential generator to no more than the customer’s historical peak kilowatt demand or 10 kilowatts, whichever is less. For non-residential customers, the load cannot exceed their historical peak, or 500 kw, whichever is less. Also, the total aggregate alternating current rating of all BTM generators will not be allowed to exceed 3% of the electrical systems peak kW demand.

Also, the ordinance states that customers who want to install a BTM generator must first submit an application and a $200 fee for review of the village utility department.

In other action, the council approved a $94,000 bid from Artesian Water Company to replace the water plant filter media.

With council’s passage of an ordinance to add a new park manager position, the way is now clear to begin interviews for prospective applicants. Mayor Bob Parker said that they expect to begin interviews this week.

Council also approved the first reading of an ordinance accepting the bid from Anthem Medical Group for medical insurance for the village’s employees. Parker said they were happy to see the cost did not increase from last year.

Village Administrator Brent Richter reported the village will need to install a unit that has 24-hour monitoring and sampling of water. He said new state regulations will require the water plant to apply for a new five year permit that includes additional measurements of levels of nickel, cadmium, lead, chromium, copper, cyanide and other chemicals.

In other news, he said the Walnut Street sanitary sewer line replacement was almost complete. The work was done in preparation for future street renovations.

He also said the new bulbs for the water tower had been delivered and the crews are waiting for all ice to melt before they go up to replace burned out bulbs.

Also, AES (formerly DP&L) has told him that they are planning a 2024 project to upgrade equipment and lines from Amsterdam Road to the city of St. Marys corporate line. The AES webpage says their intention is to revitalize the grid with new technology.

Finally, he said that Shinn Brothers Construction had delivered equipment and piping for the municipal pool repairs and once their permit application to the state Department of Health was approved, they could begin replacing leaking pipes around and under the pool.

The mayor also thanked the New Bremen Legacy Lego Team for their presentation on how to use QR coding in the community parks that would show ways of exercising. The council asked them to confer with council’s park committee chair Jessica Lomakin to see what could be done.

By Sandy Rose Schwieterman

For the Sidney Daily News

The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.

The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.