.

School District Approves Spending up to $2.4M on Energy Efficient Projects

The project involves a range of upgrades, including: sealing exterior openings and insulation upgrades to help with energy consumption; upgrading water heating and flow technology; and upgrading control systems, among other things.

The splashed into the "going-green" scene with a decision to add an energy-efficient pool heater before school started, and the improvements are not going to stop there.

In fact, the School Board approved a decision to borrow up to $2.4 million to help make its buildings more energy-friendly during its meeting on Monday.

Director of Business Services Jim Froemming said the borrowing amount will give the district some "wiggle room" for the project.

"This doesn’t necessarily lock us in to having to this (amount borrowed)," Superintendent Michael Weber said. "We need to see what the actual bids that come in are going to be."

The project involves a range of upgrades, including: sealing exterior openings and insulation upgrades to help with energy consumption; upgrading water heating and flow technology; and upgrading control systems, among other things.

Weber at a School Board meeting in August said the energy projects were important for the "future stability" of the district.

The district is working with McKinstry, a firm that works with companies on improving energy efficiency. The costs of the project will include a 7 percent commission price paid to McKinstry.

Board president James Eden said he sees the move as a proactive approach to maintaining the district's buildings.

"Rather than wait for (things) to fall apart, I’d rather have (this move forward)," he said.

Greg September 13, 2012 at 09:52 PM
We have found that the best payback is on the control system upgrades. It is amazing how much the older controls are costing even a small building. Control upgrades saved money on both energy and personnel budgets.
Terry September 14, 2012 at 09:28 AM
Hmmmmm... I need to hear more about this. If this is being done simply to "go green", I am not on board with this. We cannot afford that at this time. If this involves replacing and repairing what would have needed it anyway, then maybe.
Dave September 14, 2012 at 11:49 AM
Upgrading PW-S schools could save nearly $200,000 annually, contractor says.So we should be able to reduce the school's budget by $200,000 dollars.
Bridgett Bartlein Drews September 14, 2012 at 12:18 PM
I think it's a good idea. I've had 3 kids attending the Port schools in the last 24 yrs. I believe it's important to upgrade alot of these problems that exist & 1's that we know will be happening soon. The H.S. exspecially needs things taken care of. Some of the issues aren't broke yet, but why wait & than possibly have to close the schools to fix.
Tom Kamenick September 14, 2012 at 12:25 PM
So the last bit of information we need (assuming the contractor's own estimate to be accurate, which isn't the safest assumption) is how long the repairs/upgrades are expected to last. If it's 12 years or less, this isn't a good deal.
Lyssa Beyer (Editor) September 14, 2012 at 01:20 PM
From the discussions that I was able to sit in on, a lot are items that would need repair/maintenance anyway, so the upgrade will save the district the cost of that maintenance/repair. The district has already done things such as adding efficient light bulbs (I think the number was like 40,000) throughout the district to cut costs. The district just needed to approve the ability to borrow up to this amount before finalizing which projects, and how much ... so those details should be available in the coming months.
jdelucia September 14, 2012 at 01:35 PM
Just curious - were there no local or state companys interested in examining or bidding on the improvements? Why was this firm from Seattle picked?
Dave September 14, 2012 at 05:04 PM
So we took this out of the voters hand and let the school board barrow 2.4 million so the voters do not have to pay it back .Or is it taxation withoutr epresentation?
Dan Chaudoir September 14, 2012 at 05:05 PM
If the 7% commission paid to the contractor is against the cost of the upgrades, it encourages the contractor to spend more and would be counter-productive. However, if the contractor recieves 7% of the energy saving over some period of time, I say go for it.
Greg September 14, 2012 at 05:09 PM
Taxation without representation does not mean every item is voted on. In this case, the elected school board is our representation.
George Edwards September 14, 2012 at 05:36 PM
In business we use an ROI of 3-5 years. If it takes longer, it's not worth our money
jdelucia September 15, 2012 at 02:22 PM
Were there no local or state companys interested or even solicited in examining or bidding on the improvements? Why was this firm from Seattle picked? Does anyone know?
Greg September 15, 2012 at 09:24 PM
The company from Seattle is functioning as a consultant/project manager. The actual work has probably not bid yet.
Dave September 17, 2012 at 12:26 PM
$168,000.00 consultant

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something