CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — The Centre Region Council of Governments received a silver designation from the National Solsmart Program for its efforts to make Centre County more solar-friendly.

They join only 20 other award winners in Pennsylvania and more than 450 municipalities, counties and regional organizations across the nation.

The council was recognized for making it faster, easier and more affordable for homes and businesses to go solar. As a SolSmart designee, the Centre Region COG is working to help solar companies reduce the cost of installations and pass those savings on to consumers.

“To get this designation is really exciting. It feels really good,” Pam Adams, Sustainability Planner in the Centre Regional Planning Agency, said. “We’ve been working a lot in trying to promote solar more, make solar easier for people to be able to know about.”

Part of the council’s work included creating an informational go solar website for Centre County residents. It includes tools and resources that guide property owners through the process of installing solar on their property, as well as information on local programs and government initiatives.

“I’m excited about the recent growth of solar power in the Centre Region. So much of it is sparked by COG,” Betsy Whitman, Chair of COG`s Climate Action and Sustainability Committee, said.

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“Last fall, COG partnered with Solar United Neighbors, a national organization that helps communities set up Solar Co-Ops, to educate and negotiate a group discount for interested homeowners. My husband and I were one of the 17 households that installed solar through this Co-op,” Whitman said.