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Council Increasing Energy Efforts

The council is hoping to achieve the silver level of Sustainable Jersey.

In continuing efforts toward sustainability, and a hope that the township can achieve the silver level through Sustainable Jersey, the council approved a resolution to award a professional services contract for a greenhouse gas reduction project.

The contract was awarded during the Feb. 16 township council meeting to Dewberry-Goodkind, Inc., for $18,250.

The contract will be paid entirely through an Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant.

“This is a continuing effort toward our sustainability,” township administrator James Naples said. “The township has received the bronze level of Sustainable Jersey.”

Naples said much of the block grant the township received was used for HVAC upgrades at the Bridgewater Township Library and other work. The rest will be used for this new program.

“We are now establishing a baseline carbon footprint for all facilities, to upgrade all facilities,” he said. “We will see substantial reductions in our carbon footprint.”

All of this work, Naples said, should push the township into the silver level for Sustainable Jersey, which in turn increases the number of grants they are eligible for.

“We are also planning to establish an energy master plan, and that gives us guidance to move forward with plans,” he said.

Naples said this plan will tell the township how it can move forward with future savings.

“It will be easier to explain measures taken and the direct benefit to the public,” he said.

The council also approved a resolution to confirm legal fees for unanticipated litigation for 2008 through 2011, to be paid to Mauro, Savo and Grant.

The fees are for $52,206.85.

“We have a budget cap, and many times we write off a substantial amount of money, but there is a safety valve for unanticipated litigation,” said township attorney William Savo. “We partially exceeded the budget in 2011.”

In addition, the council unanimously approved an ordinance concerning the township's participation in the Raritan-Millstone Flood Control Commission.

As part of the commission, Bridgewater will have two representatives, one appointed by the council and one appointed by the mayor.

According to the ordinance, the commission will be analyzing data on flooding, keeping informed about grants, encouraging the acquisition of land within the floodway and making data available to the Army Corps of Engineers and others similar groups.

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