East Grand Board of Education considers wind energy project in Granby | SkyHiNews.com

East Grand Board of Education considers wind energy project in Granby

Cyndi McCoy
Grand County, Colorado

The possibility of using wind energy to cut costs in the future was among topics the East Grand Board of Education discussed last week. The board agreed to look into the feasibility of such a project, but no action was taken.

Gary Berngard of the Honeywell company met with faculty and Superintendent Nancy Karas for a review of Phase 1 of a performance contract with the school district. An original contract, signed in 1998, showed the original project “performed better than expected.”

Scope of work entailed things such as tuning up boilers, repairing backup hot water pumps, hot water heater installation, adding ventilators, and miscellaneous lighting retrofits. Implementation of about 40 improvement measures in regards to energy conservation and improvements resulted in an energy savings of $30,763 per year and an operational savings of $94,650, figures showed.

A free preliminary assessment for a new performance contract cited about 100 current projects to help the district save money and energy. Foremost was reducing energy consumption and cost even more, identifying viable opportunities for renewable energy, and addressing short- and long-term infrastructure needs.

Berngard said it is guaranteed the savings of implementing a wind turbine plant would cover the cost. Data collected and measured at a plant, which could go next to the transportation building, could also be integrated into studies in the science classrooms.

Next step would be a detailed development plan by Honeywell, with a $36,500 fee contingent only if the project met the district’s expectations. Everyone agreed many other items need to be discussed as well, including optimal height, location, insurance, safety, and legal review.

One way to facilitate the project without using capital improvement funds would be using what Berngard described as a revenue neutral cash flow. He also said there was a potential for federal stimulus dollars through the Governor’s Energy Office.

Other items of discussion included:

– Approval for transitional retirement for Tanya Cousineau, Kathe Morck, Kathleen Tees, and Holly Zastrow; for early retirement for Ellen Pacheco, and the addition of Dane Ruttenberg as a part-time girls’ soccer coach at Middle Park High School this spring.

– Approval of a resolution that will include calculation of passing periods into the official student contact time to meet state requirements.

– Approval to continue the Board of Education’s annual scholarship for students pursuing the education field.

– Review of proposed changes for the MPHS curriculum guide for the 2009-10 school year (including the possibility of adding an introduction to automotive course, guitar course, and general chemistry and physics courses).

– Fraser Valley Elementary School’s music department received a $3,100 grant from the Middle Park Music Foundation for new stereo equipment and instruments.

– Congratulations to MPHS sophomore Mason Jackson (trombone) who was named to the Colorado All-State Band; as well as MPHS musicians Chris Thompson (sax) and Kyle Keller (trumpet) who were selected for the District’s honor jazz and concert bands.

– Congratulations to Ryan Jones (last year’s winner), Refugio “Cookie” Torres (1st), Alistair Schwab (2nd), and Madison Welch and Kalina Amshey (tied, 3rd) who placed at the Fraser Valley Elementary Spelling Bee. Jones and Torres will be going on to represent the school at the state championships.

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