The light use is equal to 0.016 percent of the city’s overall use, he said. The costs would be absorbed into the city’s overall operating costs and spread across the amount paid by electric ratepayers. When the $9,000 annual cost is divided among the city’s approximately 30,000 electric customers, it works out to about 30 cents a year on average.
The lights themselves were purchased by the Downtown Christmas Lights Committee, which Perry said plans to raise money soon to illuminate trees along Main Street.
RELATED: New streetlights next year will brighten Hamilton’s Main Street
When asked about the issue, social media users expressed a variety of opinions about the lights. Among them:
- "It makes our city say 'welcome,'" wrote resident Gloria Faber.
- Eric Goodwin of Aurora Distributing LLC Gaming & Hobbies said, "As a business owner in this city I wish they would focus attention throughout the city and not just 1 mile of street."
- "Love them, leave them up all the time and would love to see some added to Main Street also," wrote resident Denise Adams. "I wouldn't mind a few extra bucks on utility bill for these. Plus people feel safer in well-lit environments"
- Another said it "highlights the renaissance in Hamilton."
- "I love lights but I don't like those," wrote Hamilton resident Kris Heindorf. "To quote James Thurber, 'There are two kinds of light — the glow that illuminates and the glare that obscures.' Not a fan of the glare of all that LED lighting in a big clump downtown. Little twinkle lights would be great.
- Others said they would like to see the lighting extended both eastward and westward along the High-Main corridor.
- "I don't mind a few extra dollars on my utility bill for this," said Rhonda Smith Sizemore. "I plan on spending even more time in this area of town now there are more restaurants and things to do, such as RiversEdge (Amphitheater), Municipal Brew Works and various festivals. I love seeing my hometown coming back to life!!"
- "November through February," suggested another. "Brightens the gray days and nights of winter weather!"
- Yet another said: "I love them! Leave them up all year. They really create a beautiful scene and fun mood in the city."
To see all the comments people offered, visit the Mike Rutledge-Journalist page on Facebook.