State Representative Shane Wilkin (R-Hillsboro) joined Speaker of the House Larry Householder (R-Glenford) and other state and energy industry leaders Thursday in breaking ground for what will be the largest solar project in Ohio history.
 
The groundbreaking kicked off construction on the 200 MW Hillcrest Solar facility which, when completed, will power approximately 39,000 homes. It is Ohio’s first utility-scale solar project.
 


“When we generate energy here in Ohio, we support Ohio jobs and Ohio communities,” Representative Wilkin said. “As a sponsor of House Bill 6, I am proud to see Hillcrest Solar break ground today as a first step toward generating more energy right here at home.”
 
Hillcrest Solar is one of six solar projects eligible for state financial assistance through House Bill 6, which was signed into law by Governor Mike DeWine in July 2019.
 
“We continue to make good on the promises we made to Ohio’s future when we passed House Bill 6 with more energy generation produced in-state and by reducing customers’ bills,” Householder said. “We’re building more generation here in Ohio while saving our ratepayers at least $1.3 billion.”
 
House Bill 6 will save Ohio’s electric ratepayers at least $1.3 billion by removing expensive, failed electric mandates currently on customers’ bills. The plan also supports Ohio jobs and expands renewable energy generation in Ohio.
 
Beginning the groundbreaking with keynote remarks, Householder discussed the facility’s potential to power thousands of homes across the state, as well as job creation and employment opportunities a facility like Hillcrest provides to rural communities. 
 
It is projected that Hillcrest Solar will bolster local economies with an influx of property tax dollars to local counties, allowing communities to improve and maintain their schools and roads and other infrastructure. 
 
“Ohio will be a leader for solar energy generation. This project alone provides more solar generation than we’ve ever done in the state of Ohio combined,” said Householder in his remarks.
 
Innergex Renewable Energy owns and operates the Hillcrest Solar facility and will oversee its construction. The Hillcrest facility will cover approximately 1,350 acres of land near the Brown County community of Mt. Orab, 43 miles east of Cincinnati.
 
State Representative Shane Wilkin is serving his first term in the Ohio House of Representatives after being appointed during the 132nd General Assembly. He represents the 91st Ohio House District, serving residents of Clinton, Highland and Pike counties, as well as residents in a portion of Ross County.