Homeowners in Windsor and three surrounding towns are a step closer to enrolling in a state-sponsored solar energy program to help reduce their electricity costs. The four community consortium, which also includes Cummington, Worthington and Goshen, have hired Massachusetts-based SunBug as the dedicated installer of solar arrays through Solarize Mass., according to local officials. "[SunBug] is really into the community, the customers and their craft - they are a good fit for the towns," said Cummington Solarize Mass representative Bill Adams. The first of four meetings with SunBug will be held from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Windsor Town Hall. Subsequent gatherings for residents of Cummington, Goshen and Worthington are scheduled Through Nov. 29. The Berkshire-area hilltowns are among the 12 Massachusetts municipalities participating in Solarize Mass for 2016-17 in partnership with the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and state Department of Energy Resources. Representatives of those two agencies and SunBug will explain how the solar energy program works and give potential customers an opportunity to sign up for a free assessment. The installer's evaluation will determine the solar compatibility of the properties and, if so, offer several financing options to pay for the projects. Initially, more than 160 home and business owners in the four towns have requested a site assessment - about half in Windsor - according to the four-town solar group. Residents have until March 31 to seek a site assessment with an April 30 deadline to sign a contract with SunBug to install the solar panels. "Interest is high and growing in all four communities," said the Rev. Alexander Hunter, a Windsor resident and local Solarize Mass volunteer. Led by "solar coaches" each of the four towns has been reaching out to property owners interested in mounting solar panels on their roofs or ground, generating electricity that will make them less dependent on their electric company. The meet-the-installer meetings also will cover how homeowners may finance individual solar energy project. Under Solarize Mass, homeowners have the option of purchasing the photovoltaic system outright from a state-approved installer, leasing the solar panels, or having the company own and maintain the panels, with the electricity generated being sold to the homeowner at a rate lower than the utility. Since the program began five years ago, Lee, Lenox, Pittsfield, Adams, Williamstown, Great Barrington and Egremont are among the 51 municipalities that enrolled in Solarize Mass. The program has resulted in a total of 2,600 small-scale installations with the solar capacity of 18 megawatts. Saving money and less dependency on fossil fuels to generate electricity appeals to many in the four hilltowns. "[Solar energy] is empowering to the people in the communities," Hunter said.