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Solar not paying off yet for Nevada military
by Associated Press
Apr 05, 2012 | 898 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CARSON CITY (AP) — Solar panels installed at three Nevada National Guard sites around the state haven’t lowered utility bills.

The state Board of Examiners on Tuesday approved the Department of Military’s request to seek $46,000 from a contingency fund to pay for projected power costs for the rest of the fiscal year.

Under a 20-year contract with Sierra Solar One, the company installed the panels at its own cost and charges 15 cents per kilowatt hour for the power generated to recoup costs. When the contract was signed about two years ago, NV Energy rates were a quarter-penny less, so the deal was inviting.

But military officials said current commercial rates are around 11 cents per kilowatt hour, meaning the solar power is costing the state more money than if it purchased electricity directly from NV Energy.

An NV Energy spokesman said commercial rates are 8 cents to 10 cents per kilowatt hour in northern Nevada, and 7 cents to 8 cents in southern Nevada.

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