NORWICH – Last Thursday afternoon, Mayor Joe Maiurano met with a small group of city residents at the Caboose Diner, 26 East Main St. for an informal, hour-long question and answer session – the first installment of The Evening Sun’s “Talk of the Town” series.
Evening Sun reporters plan to travel across the county throughout the summer for similar gatherings.
Jan Myers, who attended the session with her husband Drew and son Andrew, questioned the mayor on the lack of solar and other alternative energy sources being utilized in the city, as she was under the impression that city officials were supportive of such efforts. In Pendleton, Oregon, officials have instituted a program that offers low-interest loans to businesses and homeowners for the installation of solar panels. She wondered if the city had ever considered such a program and asked about the city’s future plans for renewable energy.
In response, Maiurano said he and other city officials have continued to promote the Renew Norwich website – www.renewnorwich.org – where people can find a wealth of information on renewable energy. In addition, city residents with an annual household income of less than $106,000 can apply for a free energy audit on the site, which launched in October. He did add, however, that he like the idea of low-interest loans as an incentive for “green” technology.
According to Myers, the program was extremely successful in Pendleton and she wondered why she hadn’t seen anything similar since moving to the area in 2005. Both she and her husband are currently enrolled at the Morrisville State College Norwich Campus, where they’re taking a renewable energy course.