Is a solar farm on the horizon in Dansville? Village gathers facts

Village explores options as company eyes solar farm in the Industrial Park

Chris Potter
The Dansville Online

DANSVILLE — Could a solar farm be on the horizon for the Village of Dansville? 

The village board of trustees held a special informational meeting last week to learn the details of a proposal by Delaware River Solar to establish a solar farm in the village. The solar farm would be located in the Industrial Park just north of the Dansville Central School. 

The project would be the first solar farm within the village limits. The village currently has no laws on the books to address solar farms, but that could change soon. The village board is exploring an official policy on the matter. In the meantime, a moratorium on solar development may be passed to put a pause on any projects until the village passes a new law. 

“We want to put in place a solar law before we get too far along,” said Dansville Mayor Pete Vogt. “We may have to do a moratorium on any further development, but I think we can put a law in place rather quickly.” 

The moratorium is expected to last a maximum of six months. Vogt expects a new solar law to pass well within that timeframe. 

“I don’t see any issue with it. Nobody has expressed any opposition to having a solar farm,” said Vogt. “We want to make sure the village is protected before we have anybody come in. So far the company rep has been pretty cooperative, so I’m optimistic things will move forward.” 

PETER VOGT

The project covers around 30 acres on land owned by the Livingston County Industrial Development Agency. It is currently leased out by the IDA and utilized as cropland. 

“That’s the one major concern, it is prime agriculture land that is being farmed right now,” said Vogt. 

The solar farm would likely be subject of a PILOT agreement. Vogt said the proposed project “hasn’t yet gotten anywhere near” the negotiations phase for tax relief. The village intends to discuss the matter further at a department head meeting and “determine where to go from there.”  

While the project would mark the village’s first solar farm, the presence of solar panels on private property has grown in recent years. Vogt estimated around 20 properties around the village are utilizing some portion of solar power on their buildings.  

“We have a few in the village who have put solar panels on their residence or businesses,” said Vogt. “The Dansville Dental Professionals have an array, for instance. The number seems to be growing.” 

According to its website, Delaware River Solar built over 20 projects from 2018 through 2020 and is currently building dozens more throughout the NYSEG and RGE electric service territories in New York.

Chris Potter can be reached at cpotter@gannett.com or on Twitter @ChrisPotter413. To get unlimited access to the latest news, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.