Groton’s New Streetlights are Using LED Technology

Groton Utilities is bringing state-of-the-art LED technology to local streetlights with a project that will save energy, cut costs, and improve areaLED Street Light lighting.

Begun this fall, the street lighting project will convert 2,000+ existing streetlights on public ways throughout the Groton Utilities service area to LED lights by the end of the year. The project’s estimated $850,000 cost will be funded through Groton Utilities’ conservation fund.

LED lights use 60-70 percent less energy than older technology, which saves money and is also a greener option as lower energy use means fewer emissions associated with power plants.

In addition, LED lights last three to four times longer than older lights, which helps hold down electric rates by cutting maintenance costs. And the improved light quality provided by LEDs – closer to a daylight spectrum – improves local safety. They also offer reduced light pollution with a more focused beam that lessens excess light spreading to unneeded areas.

What makes LED technology so efficient? Light- emitting diodes (LEDs) are solid-state devices that convert electric energy directly into light of a single color. Because they employ “cold” light generation technology, in which most of the energy is delivered in the visible spectrum, LEDs don’t waste energy in the form of non-light producing heat. In comparison, most of the energy in an incandescent lamp is in the infrared (or non-visible) portion of the spectrum. As a result, both fluorescent and high intensity discharge (HID) lamps produce a great deal of heat.

You can get a preview of the new LED streetlights outside the City of Groton Municipal Building. We’ve installed them throughout the complex, so feel free to drive through and check them out.

Annual Holiday Lights Parade Scheduled for December 2nd

The Groton Business Association (GBA), an affiliation of the Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce, has announced that this year’s Nineteenth Groton Annual Holiday Lights Parade is scheduled for Saturday, December 2 at 5 p.m.  The line of march is from Poquonnock Road at South Road, along Long Hill Road in downtown Groton to the Groton Shopping Plaza.

A special call goes out to bands, fife and drum corps and choral groups who make that special holiday music that everyone knows and loves.

The GBA urges all businesses along the parade route to decorate their windows and store fronts in the spirit of the season.

The GBA welcomes floats from businesses, clubs, organizations and marchers from all groups in the community. A panel of judges will view the parade in front of Chelsea Groton Bank.  Prizes will awarded in various categories.  While it is free to participate, all participants must complete an on-line application that can be found at www.grotonbiz.com.  For those without access to the web, please call 860-536-5680 for assistance. The deadline to file an application is Friday, November 17.

Immediately after the parade, Santa Claus will have the honor of lighting the holiday tree on the green at the rear of the Groton Shopping Plaza.   Parents, you are invited to take your child’s photograph with Santa.  Entertainment will be provided.  This post-parade celebration is sponsored by the Groton Rotary Club.

The GBA invites and encourages representatives from local small businesses to volunteer as elves.  You can not only be part of the fun, but also advertise your business along the parade route.  Call the Chamber at 860-572-9578 for more information.

The GBA would like to recognize the companies who have committed to be a sponsor for this year’s event.  They are: Groton Utilities and the Groton Parks and Recreation Department, Capstone Sponsors;  Stonington Odd Fellows Lodge #26, a Keystone Sponsor; and Groton Shopping Plaza, a Sandstone Sponsor; and Chelsea Groton Bank, Darrell Fox, Centurion Wealth Management; Grover Insurance, Thames Valley Communications and the Light House, Fieldstone Sponsors.

October 29th Power Outage Log

10/29 – Multiple Power Outages throughout town

Update (10/31 11:58 p.m.)

Efforts are currently being made to power-up portions of Litton Avenue tonight. Brandegee Avenue will temporarily lose power during this period. This will take a few hours. We greatly appreciate your patience while we restore power to this area.

Update (10/31 9:06 a.m.)

Crews will be working on Bridge Street power running wires across the roadway this morning and then will head to Litton Avenue to focus on getting power back to all customers in that area.

If you still do not have power outside of those areas please call Customer Service at 860-446-4000 so that we can assist you.

Update (6:28 p.m.)

Groton Long Point is being worked on now by repair crews. Trees and branches have been removed from lines and a new pole is getting placed.

Mumford Cove has had its power restored. Crews are patrolling Nautilus Park in Navy Housing for further issues.

Litton Avenue restoration is planned for first thing on Tuesday morning. All crews and trucks with tree crews will be there near 8AM, possibly earlier.

We will attempt to replace some single residential services this evening as time allows. Crews will be working upwards toward 11PM.

Update (4:31 p.m.)

Groton Long Point – Crews are currently working on restoring power and hope to have most customers back up by early evening

Hickory Drive/Navy Housing area – This area is currently without power. Crews will be attending to the situation soon and hope to have a resolution tonight.

Litton Avenue – Due to trees having taken down power lines and two cracked utility poles Litton Avenue will not have power restored until Tuesday.

Please be sure to check your main breaker if you do not have power in your home. Call Groton Utilities Customer Service at 860-446-4000 if you still do not have power.

Update (11:43 a.m.)

Power has been restored to Old Farm Road/Blueberry Hill Road. Crews will now work to repair Briar Hill Road.

Update (11:31 a.m.)

Power has been restored to all of Brandegee Avenue. Crews are now working on power restoration for the Old Farm Road area. The hope is for that area to have power by early afternoon. Groton Long Point and Litton Avenue are going to take a good portion of the day to restore.

Update (9:35 a.m.)

Power has been restored from Fort Hill Road down Depot Road and in that general area. Bridge Street/Mitchell Street area power restoration has taken longer than we thought but we still hope to have it up soon.

Update (8:26 a.m.)

The Bridge Street/Mitchell Street area should have it’s power restored soon. Current estimates are within the hour.

Update (8:23 a.m.)

Power has been restored to Navy Housing and the Route 117/North Road area. Thank you for your patience while we work at restoring power. We will continue to work throughout town until everyone has their power back.

Update (8:18 a.m.)

Briar Hill Road will be closed due to clearing of a tree on the power lines near the school. Electric Crews continue to patrol and make repairs.

Update (8:14 a.m.)

Portions of Navy Housing is without power due to a damaged utility pole and wires on the ground. We hope to have power restored to this area soon.

Route 117/North Road area – crews are onsite performing repairs and hope to have power restored soon.

Groton Long Point is without power due to pole damage. Crews are currently assessing the situation. No time estimate to restoration.

There are several other smaller outages throughout town that we will be attending to. We appreciate your patience as we recover from this dangerous storm.

Update (8:10 a.m.)

The Litton Avenue/Rainville Avenue area is without power due to multiple fallen trees and a damaged utility pole. Crews are onsite working to restore power, but it’s going to be a while due to all the damage. No estimated time to restoration.

Bridge Street/Mitchell Street area is without power due to a damaged utility pole. No estimate on time to power restoration.

Update (5:32 a.m.)

Groton Utilities crews are currently working to restore power to Branford Manor and Groton Estates. Additionally, a very large tree is down on the wires on Litton Avenue. Electric crews will be working to make it safe for city crews to cut the tree away.

Update (9:36 p.m.)

Due to high winds there are multiple power outages in the Groton Utilities service area. Groton Long Point and the Bailey Hill area are without power. We will be bringing in personnel to assess the situation and to make repairs once the high winds subside. We hope to begin repairs soon but safety is always are #1 priority.

Power Outage (8:02 p.m.)

There is an electrical issue in the Hazelnut Hill area. Heavy rain is causing issues. Crews are onsite working on the problem.

 

Groton Utilities Crew Heads to St. Thomas for Storm Restoration Work

Electric Crew headed to St. Thomas

(Left to Right) Brian Roche, Keith Lemoine, Matthew Cook and Jeffrey Lyon with the truck headed to the Virgin Islands

Groton Utilities is sending electric crews to St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands to help with the restoration of electrical services to the storm torn Caribbean island.

The first crew will include three electric linemen and a manager for about three weeks.  Other crews will be rotating out every few weeks for the next three months.  Two vehicles, one digger truck and one pickup truck, plus a pole carrier, will be used by the crews during their restoration work.

The first crew members traveling to St. Thomas are linemen Jeffrey Lyon, Matthew Cook and Keith Lemoine.  Brian Roche will manage the crew.  They will leave Groton on Sunday morning and travel to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where the vehicles will be placed on barges for transporting to St. Thomas.  Crews will arrive in St. Thomas on October 11.

Groton Utilities electric crews are one of two Connecticut public power systems to commit to the St. Thomas electric restoration effort.  Norwich Public Utilities will also be involved in the restoration efforts. Crews from other municipal electric utilities in New England will join Groton Utilities in the effort, which is being coordinated by the New England Public Power Association (NEPPA), the organization representing municipally owned and operated electric companies in New England.

Groton Utilities is one of the nation’s more than 2,000 public power utilities, which are nationally organized as the American Public Power Association (APPA).  Groton Utilities recently earned a Reliable Public Power RP3 designation from APPA for providing its consumers with the highest degree of reliable and safe electric service.

Groton Utilities has been a municipally owned and operated electric utility since 1904 and serves a population of more than 35,000 in the greater Groton area, including Pfizer, Electric Boat and the U. S. Naval Submarine Base.

The American Public Power Association (APPA) is the national organization representing the nation’s more than 2,000 community- and state-owned electric utilities.

Follow along as the crew assists in St. Thomas at the Groton Utilities Facebook page.

Groton Fall Festival is this Saturday

Come celebrate your Greater Groton Community.  It’s time for you to discover Groton’s Twelfth Annual Fall Festival, scheduled for Saturday, October 7, 2017.  This is a special community event created and hosted by the Groton Business Association (GBA) of the Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce.

Groton’s Twelfth Annual Fall Festival runs from 11 a.m. to 5 Fall Festivalp.m. and is a rain or shine event

The main Festival site at Poquonnock Plains Park will feature exhibits by local businesses and organizations.  Artists and crafters will be displaying their skill and have wares for purchase.   A complete list of businesses, organizations, participating artists, crafters, and food vendors, can be found at www.grotonbiz.com.  This is the official Groton Business Association (GBA) and Groton’s Twelfth Annual Fall Festival web site.

There will entertainment throughout the day, including the Groton Parks & Recreation Karate Program, Little League Pitching, Grasso Technical High School student musicians, the Mystic Aquarium Touch Tanks, Gabriele’s Martial Arts, AmtGard, a medieval foam sword fighting; and Dance Country.

Are you ready for a scarecrow hunt?  Festival attendees will receive a list of all booths with scarecrows. In order to participate, you must visit each booth and take a picture of the scarecrow. If you get a photo of every scarecrow, then return to the GMCC booth to submit your entry for a chance to win great prizes!  Attendees also get to choose their favorite scarecrow, and the Exhibitor with the winning scarecrow receives a grand prize worth over $200.00!

Food vendors will offer a variety of food and drink.

The GBA would like to recognize the companies who have committed to be a sponsor for this year’s event.  They are: Groton Utilities and the Groton Parks   and Recreation Department, Capstone Sponsors;  Stonington Odd Fellows Lodge #26, a Keystone Sponsor; and Groton Shopping Plaza, a Sandstone Sponsor; and Chelsea Groton Bank, Darrell Fox, Centurion Wealth Management; Grover Insurance, Thames Valley Communications and the Light House, Fieldstone Sponsors.

The GBA, a coalition of representatives from the local business community, the educational sector, the non-profit community and governmental units, is an affiliation of the Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce.

Community Solar Farms Ribbon Cutting Ceremony a Success

Cutting the ribbon

SOLAR POWER CELEBRATION – Members of the community partnership which constructed three solar farms in the Greater Groton Community cut the ceremonial ribbon, celebrating completion of the project. Shown from left to right, John Burt, Town of Groton Manager; Keith Hedrick, City of Groton Mayor; Captain Paul A. Whitescarver, Commanding Officer, Naval Submarine Base New London; Ron Gaudet, Groton Utilities Director; Mark Lavin, Senior Vice President for Government Development Services, Balfour Beatty Communities, Peggy Roberts, President, Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce (GMCC); and Drew Rankin, Executive Director, Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative (CMEEC). (Photo by Deborah Damm)

From the sounds of the national anthem sung by the Fitch High School chamber choir to the ceremonial cutting of the red ribbon, the celebration of the completion of the three solar farms in the Greater Groton Community was a resounding success.

The ceremony at Polaris Park, the site of the largest of the solar farm sites, was marked by a positive response of representatives of the community team that constructed these renewable energy facilities.

The private and public community partnership includes a broad spectrum of interests, including the U. S. Naval Submarine Base, Balfour Beatty Communities, Groton Utilities, the City of Groton, the Town of Groton, the Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative, and Brightfields.

Capt. Paul Whitescarver, Commanding Officer, Naval Submarine Base, New London, stated that “In total, the farms in the Polaris Park, Trident Park, and Pelican Park are expected to produce nearly 8 million kilowatt-hours every year.”

“Today, our Navy energy programs aim to reduce the Navy’s consumption of energy, decrease its reliance on foreign sources of oil, and significantly increase its use of alternative energy,” he emphasized.

Other speakers from the community partnership, including City of Groton Mayor Keith Hedrick, Mark Lavin from Balfour Beatty Communities, and Ronald A. Gaudet, Groton Utilities Director, all emphasized the major energy savings, the importance of the private-community partnership and the positive impact of this green energy source to the Groton’s energy supply mix.

The three solar facilities are expected to produce nearly eight (8) million kilowatt-hours of electric energy annually, including the following approximated lifetime benefits:

Solar Sign* 833 homes served 100 percent annually by solar energy;

* 94,000 tons of carbon eliminated;

* 1,137 cars removed from the road;

* 9,600,000 of gasoline avoided;

* 140,000 tree cleansing properties annually.

The site also contains electric storage capacity. When this storage is used in conjunction with the solar, it provides critical resiliency during the duration of the power outages.

The storage is large enough to extend electric supply for the equivalent of 100 homes for a 24-hour period.

Groton Utilities Issues Telephone Scam Alert

Groton Utilities has issued a telephone scam alert as customers are currently receiving unsolicited telephone calls threatening to shut off their electricity. The callers are claiming that the customers’ bills are overdue and are demanding payment over the phone.

Director of Utilities Ron Gaudet explained that a company has been using a phone scam to attempt to defraud its residential and business customers. “These callers are threatening to disconnect our customers for non-payment,” he stated. “These phone calls are not coming from Groton Utilities.”Scam Alert

Gaudet urged all Groton Utilities customers to call customer service at 860-446-4000 if they have any doubts about these types of calls. “We are prepared to respond promptly to your calls and concerns,” he emphasized.

Groton Utilities will never disconnect a customer’s service without following our policies and procedures which insure a proper review of a customer’s account and reasonable opportunities to pay a delinquent account, he explained.

“Most importantly, if Groton Utilities contacts you directly, we will always identify ourselves at the outset of the telephone call,” Gaudet stated.

Groton Utilities recommends that you always ask for identification of any caller and their telephone numbers. You can always call us directly at our Customer Service Center at 860-446-4000 to confirm the legitimacy of any unsolicited calls to your residence or business.

Never give your personal financial information to anyone whom you do not know. This includes credit card numbers, social security numbers or bank account numbers.

Groton Utilities is a municipally owned and operated electric utility, serving more than 15,000 customers in the Greater Groton area.​

Groton Utilities Celebrates Completion of Community Solar Farms with Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Groton Utilities has scheduled a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate a successful private and public community partnership which produced three solar farms in the Greater Groton Community.

The ceremony will begin at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, September 21, at Polaris Park, the site of the largest of the three solar farms. The other two solar farm sites are Trident Park and Pelican Park.

Among the expected speakers for the event are Capt. Paul Whitescarver, Commanding Officer, Naval Submarine Base, New London; City of Groton Mayor Keith Hedrick, and a representative from Balfour Beatty Communities.

The three solar facilities are expected to produce nearly seven (7) million kilowatt-hours of electric energy annually, including the following approximated lifetime benefits:

* 833 homes served 100 percent annually by solar energy;

* 94,000 tons of carbon eliminated;

* 1,137 cars removed from the road;

* 9,600,000 of gasoline avoided;

* 140,000 tree cleansing properties annually.

Solar Panels

The site also contains electric storage capacity. When this storage is used in conjunction with the solar, it provides critical resiliency during the duration of the power outages.

The storage is large enough to extend electric supply for the equivalent of 100 homes for a 24-hour period.

The private and public community partnership includes a broad spectrum of interests, including the U. S. Naval Submarine Base, Balfour Beatty Communities, Groton Utilities, the City of Groton, the Town of Groton, the Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative, and Brightfields.

Groton Utilities has been a municipally owned and operated electric utility since 1904 and serves a population of more than 35,000 in the greater Groton area, including Pfizer, Electric Boat and the U. S. Naval Submarine Base.  Groton Utilities also has a Water Division, which has 6,600 water customer accounts and serves a population of some 45,000 people.  The Water Division serves the City of Groton, parts of the Town of Groton, Groton Long Point, Noank, and sells water to the Town of Ledyard on a sale-for-resale basis. The Water Division also sells water to the Mohegan Sun Casino.

Labor Day Weekend Concerts in the Park

Jay Dempsey Band photo

The Jay Dempsey Band

Join us for a magical, musical Labor Day Weekend of Concerts in the Park 2017 featuring two concerts – one on Friday, another on Sunday.

Country music at its best will be featured Friday, September 1, at 6:30 p.m. in Washington Park in the City of Groton when Jay Dempsey and his band sets the mood. Dempsey’s country band features some seasoned players from “Highway Call” & “High Times.” Returning to the lineup are veterans Jim Pavelski on drums, Don Hemmer on pedal steel and electric guitar and Chuck Davis on bass & vocals.

Jay’s 2017 show includes some well-known traditional country tunes, featuring the pedal steel guitar, Texas Country, Southern rock and some favorite country contemporary radio hits. The band recently performed the Mohegan Sun 2017 BBQ Festival and the Taste of Mystic. A free, family fun City of Groton Concert not to be missed.

On Sunday the big sound of the Rock N’ Soul Revue band will be featured in Washington Park in the City of Groton beginning at 6:30 p.m. You will simply want to start dancing, when the Rock N’ Soul Revue strikes up the band with Motown, rock, pop and a touch of calypso.

Rock 'n Soul Revue Band

Rock ‘n Soul Revue

The concert series is free and is co-sponsored and co-produced by Groton Utilities and the City of Groton Parks and Recreation Department.

For concert information or cancellation notices, call 860-446-4129, the concert hotline. Or check out Groton Utilities’ web site at grotonutilities.com and the City’s web site at cityofgroton.com.

Food is available on site.  The City of Groton Babe Ruth League sells food and drink as a fund raiser.

The concerts are designed to be especially appealing to families for a fun, inexpensive night out. Spectators are encouraged to bring their families and perhaps a picnic supper.  The concert site also has sufficient room on the basketball court for dancing.