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PSC approves solar energy project in Mason County

By Fred Pace, HD Media

MASON COUNTY, W.Va. — Mason County Economic Development Authority Executive Director John Musgrave said Friday he was glad to hear the West Virginia Public Service Commission (PSC) had authorized a major solar energy project in the county.

“This is great news for Mason County,” Musgrave said.

New Haven PV I LLC, a subsidiary of Kansas-based Tyr Energy Development Renewables, was given the green light to build a 100-megawatt solar electric generating facility on 1,555 acres near Sassafras, about 3.5 miles south of New Haven. The company said the project area will be on 304 acres of pasture fields and land consisting of moderate and steep hills, according to the PSC.

“We’ve been working with them for some time and they have a great site, which is pretty close to the Mountaineer Power Plant,” Musgrave said.

The company applied for the permit on Aug. 18, citing legislation passed in 2020 to encourage the development of solar power in the state.

Senate Bill 578 adjusted the calculation of business and occupation taxes for generating, producing and selling electricity from solar energy facilities. The bill allows utilities to develop 200 megawatts of solar generation, though the utilities are limited to only 50 megawatt increments to start once a utility meets an 85% subscription rate for either residential, commercial or industrial customers.

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