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District to Save With Energy Improvements

The program is being done through Honeywell.

The district is contemplating an $8.5 million energy savings project, with an expected savings of $590,000 per year for a 15-year period.

Business Administrator Peter Starrs said Honeywell has provided an update to the facilities committee, and has received bids for the projects determined through a recent audit.

“The energy savings improvement program is a plan that is allowed by the state allowing us to improve efficiencies, equipment and all things for savings energy,” he said.

The district is moving forward working with Honeywell for energy saving projects in the district through a program with the county. First, there was a free energy audit through the government energy audit program before proposals were accepted from energy companies, and Honeywell was chosen.

Now, an energy plan is being put together, and it will be presented to the board soon.

Starrs said the district is allowed to move forward with paying for project improvements over a 15-year period.

At this point, the district has not determined what method specifically to move forward with, but will be looking at the one that is most cost-effective.

The board of education approved several resolutions at its Sept. 24 meeting, one that sets Honeywell as the company it will work with on the project, as well as two other resolutions authorizing $9 million in bonds for the project.

“We are taking the lead from our financial advisor to find out what that should be,” he said. “With both of them, it is a 15-year payback to do all these improvements.”

Starrs said they are looking at lighting improvements, heating and ventilating, boiler replacements and boiler controls.

“These were all on immediate capital projects because most of the boilers being replaced are 40 years old,” he said. “And this is for all the buildings.”

Robin B October 02, 2012 at 01:11 PM
A 15 year payback would never be approved in the private sector. If that is the only critera, the full project should never move forward. Better to pick the low hanging fruit...those few projects with the biggest payoff.
I concur with RBrueckner. Any 15-year payback projects should be on the bottom of the list, especially CAPEX projects. Instead, why didn't your energy guru rule out all OPEX projects that are budget neutral before using funds that would be better used for delivery of services? By capturing the budget neutral operating savings, those dollars would be leveraged to expand any complimenting CAPEX projects that would not require increasing the District's debt load irrespective of whether the savings offsets the debt carrtying cost. Bottomline, it's still debt and should be deferred until all budget neutral projects have been exhausted. Since they've already decided to go down the debt road, why not have on-going parallel budget neutral initiatives? Any potential enhanced net cost savings could be used to pay down faster bond debt.

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