I am a 34-year resident of SLO County, and for nearly three years I have been constructing the Topaz Solar Farm project.
I started as a laborer and worked my way up to construction supervisor. For many of us local guys, this project changed our lives.
In 2011, we were all struggling and basically at the end of our rope. First Solar gave us a new life.
The company raised our standards in construction skills, environmental knowledge and safety.
From this job I have seen my fellow workers pay off old debt and purchase new vehicles, new furniture and new homes — I know of one guy who has saved enough money to purchase a home for cash!
I have seen men regain their dignity to provide for their families and cherish their jobs building a clean energy power plant. And now, I see many of my coworkers moving on to new local jobs while some, like me, are going to be traveling with First Solar.
Topaz came at the right time, and I want to acknowledge everyone in the SLO County government who worked to make this project a reality.