Farmers, Riverhead officials take on solar panel issue

The farmers want to charge companies to let

The farmers want to charge companies to let them put solar panels on farmland – a move the farmers say would help them stay in business. (Credit: News 12)

RIVERHEAD - Cash-strapped farmers asked the Riverhead Town Board to oppose a resolution that would prevent them from installing solar panels to make money.

The farmers want to charge companies to let them put solar panels on farmland – a move the farmers say would help them stay in business.

Riverhead Town Supervisor Sean Walter says that he does not want to see thousands of acres of solar panels on land once used for agriculture.

“The rents that solar [companies] are willing to pay far outpace what a young farmer can pay to lease farmland,” said Walter. “If you allow this, it will end agriculture. I’m convinced of that.”

The legislation allows solar panels to be installed on farmland only if they are used to operate the farm.

At the end of the public hearing, town officials and Supervisor Walter agreed to form a special board made up of farmers and town officials. They will meet to revisit and possibly revise the resolution. They hope to meet within a few weeks.

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Top 5 Must See

Police say John Tyler Armstrong was speeding and 1 East Hampton town trustee accused of drunken driving
An annual telethon is being held on Sunday 2 Annual telethon pays tribute to murdered student Max Kolb
Police believe the serial knifepoint robber who has 3 Police: Serial knifepoint robber strikes in Ronkonkoma
The fire broke out around 2 a.m. Sunday 4 2 firefighters among 3 injured in Central Islip house fire
The Daily Show correspondent Hasan Minhaj stands at 5 Journalists honor 1st Amendment as Trump hosts rally

advertisement | advertise on News 12

More News

Riverhead Town officials are balking at the idea, Fight over solar power usage on East End farms

Some East End farmers want to use their land to harvest power and make some

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.

LOGIN SUBSCRIBE