BPU offers community solar program for commercial customers

The Board of Public Utilities has opened its BPU Community Solar Farm to commercial utility customers.

The solar farm has nearly 4,000 photovoltaic solar panels.

Commercial customers now will be able to have access to solar energy through the BPU’s solar farm program, that makes it affordable and accessible to everyone, a spokesman stated.

Previously, the community solar farm program was available only to residential customers.

“We are pleased to now offer BPU commercial customers the option of utilizing renewable solar energy that is produced right here in Wyandotte County,” said Don Gray, general manager of BPU, in a news release. “The Community Solar Farm provides simple, affordable access to solar energy for the entire community, with participants benefiting from reduced costs on their electric bills and the knowledge that they are reducing their individual carbon footprint.”

The BPU scores high on the renewable energy scale, with 45 percent of its power generation from renewable energy sources including wind, hydropower, landfill gas and solar.

Each of the 3,780 individual solar panels in BPU’s 1,000 KW Community Solar Farm will eliminate 12 tons of CO2, according to the spokesman. That’s the equivalent of reducing single automobile emissions of 23,500 miles, planting 278 trees, or recycling 37 tons of waste versus placing it in a landfill.

Commercial BPU customers will be able to lease from one to 500 solar panels over a multi-year period depending on the size of that commercial customer, while receiving a credit of approximately $3.20 a month for each panel on their utility bill. An initial one-time lease fee of $470 applies throughout the 25-year life of the farm, with the user option of selling the individual panel back to BPU if a participant moves out of the service area.

For more information on this new program, go to www.bpu.com/solar, call 913-573-9997, or email BPU at solarpanels@bpu.com.

The BPU also will hold a free solar seminar for Kansas City, Kansas, residents on Tuesday, April 16.

The seminar will take place at the West Wyandotte Public Library, 1737 N. 82nd St., Kansas City, Kansas. Two sessions will take place, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. and from 6 to 7:30 p.m. April 16.

Bonner Springs family makes custom knives

A Bonner Springs couple, Kevin and Cindy Scott, showed their custom-made knives at a gun and knife show on the weekend in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by William Crum)

by William Crum

One of the many things that makes Wyandotte County unique is the people and what they do.

One company that is based in Bonner Springs, Kansas, is called Scott’s Custom Knives.

Kevin Scott has been making knives for well over 15 years. Cindy Scott also makes knives for the company.

They have received numerous awards for craftsmanship. They’re located in Bonner Springs, Kansas.

On March 23 and 24, they were at a gun and knife show held at the KCI Expo Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

After talking to Scott, I learned a lot of what true craftsmanship really is. I was impressed. In my personal opinion, if you want custom knives this is the place to go.

Scott’s Custom Knives has a website at www.scottscustomknives.com.

Foundation president and Kansas governor to speak at KCK Chamber’s annual meeting

Janis Bowdler, left, and Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, right

Janis Bowdler, president of JP Morgan Chase & Co. Foundation, will be the guest speaker at the Kansas City, Kansas, Chamber of Commerce’s annual meeting, with welcoming remarks by Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly.

The annual meeting will be from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at the Reardon Convention Center, 5th and Minnesota, Kansas City, Kansas.

The theme of the event is “Building Equitable Cities: How to Drive Economic Mobility and Regional Growth.”

According to a spokesman, JP Morgan Chase & Co. Foundation made a commitment in January 2018 to invest $1.75 billion over the next five years to strengthen workforce systems, revitalize neighborhoods, grow small businesses and improve the financial health of individuals.

“We are excited at the opportunity to hear Ms. Bowdler’s global, corporate perspective as it relates to our emerging region,” said Daniel Silva, president and CEO of the KCK Chamber. “Part of our mission at the chamber is to propel economic growth and sustainability through strengthening our workforce, empowering small businesses and improving the lives of individuals throughout our region.”

Doors open at 11:15 a.m., followed by the annual meeting lunch at 11:30 a.m., Gov. Kelly’s remarks, board chair comments, and the keynote speech starting at noon.

The event is open to the public, KCK Chamber members, chamber guests, and the media.

The cost of the luncheon is $75 per person for individual chamber members or $90 for individual nonmembers.

For more information, call the KCK Chamber at 913-371-3070 or email Katelyn McInerney at Katelyn@KCKChamber.com.