Roanoke recognized for efforts to encourage growth of solar power

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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ7) The city of Roanoke is getting credit for encouraging the use of solar power.

Monday morning, the city announced it has received a "bronze designation" from the SolSmart program, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.

The designation indicates that Roanoke has taken steps to promote the growth of solar energy by streamlining the permitting process, adopting solar-friendly zoning, providing easy access to information and offering a property tax break.

Add a 30 percent federal tax credit, and city leaders say there is a strong incentive to consider solar power.

Nell Boyle is the city's Sustainability and Outreach Coordinator.

"We hope more people in the city of Roanoke will consider solar as a viable option," Boyle told WDBJ7. "You know as energy prices go up, solar prices are coming down, so it's a lot more affordable than it was just a few years ago."