A solar array expected to provide enough power for Stockton Springs Town Office, Fire Department, ballpark, harbor and Public Works garage was recently installed atop the garage.

The nearly 32-kilowatt system was designed and is owned by Sundog Solar of Searsport. Selectmen in September 2017 approved a power purchase agreement — commonly known as a PPA — with Sundog to purchase the power produced by the solar panels at a lower rate than that of its previous electricity supplier. Sundog projects the town will save more than $100,000 over the life of the system, which includes solar panels and inverters.

The town has the option to purchase the system after six years, at fair market value. Sundog benefits immediately by claiming tax credits for installing the renewable power source, tax breaks the municipality isn't eligible for.

Sundog co-owner Chuck Piper pitched the plan to the town.

“This is a good long-term strategy for Stockton Springs to reduce expenses for taxpayers,”  Piper said in a press release this week. “Under the power purchase agreement, the town is now paying less money per unit of electricity. This is a win-win arrangement for the town, taxpayers and the environment.”

The photovoltatic panels will generate an estimated 38,500 kilowatt hours of electricity annually and have a design life of 30 years, Piper said. It is a grid-tied system, which means if there is a power outage, the town buildings will still lose power, Piper previously said.

The town will enter into a power purchase agreement, or PPA, with a Sundog Solar subsidiary called Stockton Springs Solar LLC. The town will purchase electricity at a discounted rate, saving an estimated $4,450 in cumulative utility charges in the initial six years. The system would pay for itself in its 13th year, according to Sundog's proposal.