Bringing solar to Aiken’s Toole Hill, leaders to hold town hall event Thursday


AIKEN, S.C. (WJBF) — It’s likely to power the home of the future and local leaders are hoping that a town hall event in Aiken will shed light on solar energy.

“I installed them on top hospitals, on top of playgrounds roofing, and over basketball courts,” Marquita Parker told NewsChannel 6’s Shawn Cabbagestalk 

She knows her way around solar panels. “My last job in Arizona was putting up solar panels. I loved the experience. I made at least about $14/hour,” Parker added.

Now local leaders want to create jobs and help you save a little cash at the same time. 

“It doesn’t matter a whole lot overcoming a background issue to install solar panels but it’s a viable career,” Rev. Brendolyn Boseman Executive Director of The Imani Group, Inc. said.

Boseman saw a need in the Toole Hill Community. 

“When I moved here, this house and that house was the only new houses in this community. Everything else was abandoned homes, placard homes, a few elderly residents who did not move, stayed here but I watched this entire community grow,” she said. 

The self-proclaim Godmother of Toole Hill receiving a grant to help do just that.

“To pilot solar information, education, and installation in low and moderate-income communities,” Boseman added.

The Imani Group, Inc. is teaming up with a number of local agencies to host a workshop on solar in the community on Thursday, August 16.

“For low and moderate income communities it’s cost.  Yeah your electric bill and your energy bill are greatly reduced but the upstart cost of putting a system up on your roof and in low and moderate-income communities, finding people that own their homes and are not renters who can authorize those installations and then in communities that are low and moderate-income credit issues are always an issue,” Boseman shared.

Boseman says that low and moderate-income communities should be the first in line.

Speakers will be covering solar energy for your home, how to conserving energy, and jobs available in the field. 

“I think a lot of people will be interested in it. There are some people that I ran across that want it but it’s not available as much even a job,” Parker added.

Leaders will answer questions you may have.

“What’s the conversation, what’s the buzzwords are what does it mean net neutrality? What does it mean that you are on the grid? What does it mean that you can sell credits back?  What are the different systems? What is the cost? How do you get a job in the industry? It’s education and empowerment all at the same time,” Boseman said.

Helping to provide options for people like Marquita Parker.

“I hope they can pursue that,” she said. 

The town hall event is scheduled for Thursday at The American Legion at 602 Hampton Avenue Northwest.

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