Public Hearing on Solar Development in Rural Pennsylvania Set for October 1

HARRISBURG – The Center for Rural Pennsylvania, chaired by Sen. Gene Yaw, will hold a public hearing on Friday, October 1st at 9 a.m. at Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania to explore current policy approaches to solar development in rural Pennsylvania, and matters to consider when beginning and ending/decommissioning a solar project. The hearing will also be held via Zoom.

“With the expansion of the solar energy industry in Pennsylvania, rural communities and landowners are asking important questions about solar development in terms of land use policies, project implementation, and solar panel decommissioning,” said Sen. Yaw. “The Center for Rural Pennsylvania has assembled state, regional, and national experts who can speak to these issues and provide guidance to our rural communities.”

Featured panelists at the hearing are: Thomas Murphy, Penn State Extension; Mohamed Badissy, Penn State Dickinson School of Law; Michael Roth, Policy Director, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture; Brian Ross, Vice President for Renewable Energy, Great Plains Institute/SolSmart Advisor; Daniel Brockett, Penn State Extension; Paul Mason, Fourth Generation Dairy Farmer and Farm Bureau Member; Ariane Benrey, Policy Analyst, Division of Clean Energy, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities; Bruce Burcat, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Coalition; and Scott Elias, Senior Manager of State Affairs, Solar Energy Industries Association. 

In addition to Sen. Yaw, Center Board members are: Board Vice Chairman Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski; Board Secretary Dr. Nancy Falvo, Clarion University of Pennsylvania; Board Treasurer Stephen Brame, Governor’s representative; Sen. Katie Muth; Rep. Dan Moul; Richard Esch, University of Pittsburgh; Dr. Timothy Kelsey, Pennsylvania State University; Shannon Munro, Pennsylvania College of Technology; Dr. Charles Patterson, Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania; Susan Snelick, Northern Pennsylvania Regional College; and Darrin Youker, Governor’s representative.

The public hearing will be held at the Shippensburg University Conference Center, 500 Newburg Rd, Shippensburg, PA 17257. To attend the hearing via Zoom, attendees are asked to register in advance at

Please note: Shippensburg University requires all visitors to wear a mask when indoors, except while actively eating or drinking.

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The Center for Rural Pennsylvania is a bipartisan, bicameral legislative agency that serves as a resource for rural policy within the Pennsylvania General Assembly. The Center works with the legislature, educators, state and federal executive branch agencies, and national, statewide, regional and local organizations to maximize resources and strategies that can better serve Pennsylvania’s nearly 3.4 million rural residents.

Christine Caldara PiatosCommunications Manager

(717) 787-9555

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