The Wysocki Family of Cos. is part owner of the Central Sands Dairy in Armenia. The company proposed a 6,000-acre dairy in Saratoga, but now there are plans for a solar project on 1,650 acres of the land. (Photo: USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin file photo)
SARATOGA - A Kansas company is proposing a 150-megawatt solar project on 1,200 acres owned by a company that has planned a proposed mega-dairy in the town.
The solar panels for the project proposed by the company, Savion, of Lenexa, Kansas, would cover 1,200 acres of land owned by the Wysocki Family of Companies, Saratoga Town Chairman Terry Rickaby said. It is unclear how the proposed solar project would affect the 5,300-cow dairy, Rickaby said.
The total project would use 1,650 of 6,000 acres the Wysocki Family of Companies planned to use for crops and spreading manure, according to a Power Point presentation from Savion posted on Saratoga's website. The proposed solar project would produce enough electricity to power 40,000 homes, according to the company.
Savion is in the process of doing a wetlands survey and a threatened and endangered species report. The company plans to prepare and submit an application for the project in early 2020.
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If approved, the project would be located on the west side of State 13, on both sides of Rangeline Road in Saratoga, Rickaby said. The expected timeline for the project calls for construction in late 2021 and into 2022.
Rickaby said town officials and residents heard rumors about the proposed solar project, but the company didn't contact the town until about two weeks ago. A public meeting on the project is planned for Sept. 25, although the time has not been decided. Savion plans to create a Facebook page to keep residents informed about the project and answer questions, Rickaby said.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources put a permit review and environmental impact statement process for the proposed Golden Sands Dairy on hold in August, because the company had not submitted information to complete its application, according to the DNR's website. The DNR is not actively working on the review for the dairy.
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