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Steamboat Magazine

SolSmart Awards Silver Designation to County and City

01/14/2021 12:38PM ● By City of Steamboat Springs
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, COLORADO- The City of Steamboat Springs and Routt County have received silver designations from the national SolSmart program for making it faster, easier, and more affordable for homes and businesses to go solar.

“It’s taken a partnership from both the private and public sector to enable the community to enjoy this recognition and achieve this milestone,” commented Routt County Building Official Todd Carr. “A lot of work has gone into shining the light on all that the county and city are doing around solar and sustainability.”

This designation recognizes both entities for taking bold steps to encourage solar energy growth and remove obstacles to solar development. For companies looking to expand, a SolSmart Silver designation is a signal that the Yampa Valley is “open for solar business.”

Steamboat Springs and Routt County are helping solar companies greatly reduce the cost of installations and pass those savings on to consumers. This allows even more local homes and businesses to obtain affordable, clean, and reliable electricity through solar. One such example is the new solar checklist the county building department established that outlines the essential steps in the solar process.

“Just like the sun will come up tomorrow, these programs will continue to expand providing the community further opportunities to utilize solar and renewable energies,” said Special Projects/Intergovernmental Services Manager Winnie Delliquadri. “Our goal is to make it easier for those that want to go solar.”

To receive designation, cities and counties make changes to their local processes to reduce the time and money it takes to install a solar energy system. This includes evaluating local permitting processes, as well as planning and zoning procedures. SolSmart designees also develop innovations in areas such as market development and finance.

SolSmart is led by The Solar Foundation and the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office. More than 380 cities, counties, and small towns have achieved SolSmart designation since the program launched in 2016.

The SolSmart Silver recognition follows the recent news of nearly $4M in DOLA grant dollars awarded to agencies in Northwest Colorado through two solar grants provided to the City of Steamboat Springs for $2.1M and the City of Craig for $1.8M. Individuals interested in learning more, can visit