Tuesday, November 10, 2015

BOE Shuts Down Driving Range to Make Way for Solar Panels #laytonsvillegolfcourse

Bad news this evening for the Laytonsville Golf Course.  The Montgomery County Board of Education is putting solar panels on the golf course's driving range.  That's the end of practice swings for golfers, and lessons for thousands of county public school children. 

The Board of Education only sent two MCPS administrators to this evening's meeting to discuss the plan to put solar panels on the Laytonsville Middle School site in Gaithersburg.

Neither of those administrators had any clue that half of the Laytsonville Middle School site is leased to the Laytonsville Golf Course.

Take a look at the Google Earth image of the middle school site.  See all that really green land? That's the driving range.

Now take a look at the plans for the solar panels.  This is a copy of the plans that MCPS sent out to neighbors of this site.  See how the solar panels on the right are on the really green part of the land?
No one in MCPS noticed that?  

Now, if the lease of half of this property was a secret, well then, we could understand how no one in MCPS knew that half of this property was the driving range for the Laytonsville Golf Course.  But, the lease of this land was not a secret.  In fact, MCPS mentions this lease in their very own site selection report that they put out in 2011.

The MCPS administrators at this evening's solar panel meeting wanted the public to trust and believe that everything about the 60 acre solar panels on future school sites plan had been thoroughly vetted and reviewed by MCPS staff.

It's a little hard to believe that this plan has been thoroughly reviewed when MCPS staff didn't even notice an entire driving range on one of the properties!



  1. According to the SITE SELECTION ADVISORY COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION, "Both leases contain retrieval clauses should the site be needed for educational purposes." When do the leases with the golf course and the agricultural use come to term? Using the land for a solar power plant is NOT an "educational purpose." If the plans to build the solar power plant overlap with the lease terms, lessees will probably bring legal action against MCPS and the county. How does spending hundreds of thousands on legal fees and/or buying out leases comport with all the "savings" MCPS may receive on future power bills?

  2. The fruits of our prosperity bear problems for posterity.

  3. I wonder how many buses would fit on that site. *wink*


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