BALTIMORE (AP) — A Maryland Public Service Commission judge is giving tentative approval to a large solar energy project on the grounds of a state prison complex near Hagerstown.

Public Utility Law Judge Dennis Sober issued a proposed order Wednesday to grant Easton-based Maryland Solar LLC a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity. The order becomes final Oct. 8 unless it is appealed.

The developer wants to place 100,000 solar panels on 250 acres near the medium-security Maryland Correctional Institution. The project would generate up to 20 megawatts of electricity, making it Maryland’s largest solar array.

Supporters say it would create about 125 construction jobs and boost the state’s efforts to reduce dependence on fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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