Meredith Land, NBC 5 News
The City of Carrollton is spending more than $500,000 in stimulus money to install solar power systems in an effort to become more energy efficient.
The city of Carrollton is using a big chunk of federal stimulus money to become more energy efficient.
The city is installing two solar power systems. City leaders said the $512,000 price tag is worth it.
"It's new technology, and we are at the cutting edge of it," said Michael McKay, Carrollton's civil engineering manager.
McKay said solar power systems are being installed on top of City Hall, and Fire Station No. 2 in Carrollton.
"It's federal money," he said. "It's grant money. It's not directly from the citizens and the community. We see this as an opportunity to try something. It's pretty expensive."
McKay said it would take about 80 years for the investment to pay off.
But the high price tag has some residents talking.
Michael Whatley said it's not an investment he would make.
"It's not a payoff that any of us living here now will see in the future, nor will my kids, who are living here in Carrollton," he said.
McKay said Carrollton had to use the grant money to reduce energy usage in the city, and the solar panels were the best option.
"We see it as a real stable, viable-type technology," he said. "It just needs to lower its price a little bit."
McKay said he hopes the city can eventually can save money by saving the environment. The solar power systems will be complete in April, and residents can go online to see how much electricity they are generating.