Shrorewood School District may put more manpower energy into efficiency efforts

Published on: 11/14/2012

Shorewood - The Shorewood School Board is open to the idea of establishing an ad hoc committee to oversee implementation of the district's $2.6 million energy efficiency project, but more information is needed before a decision can be made.

The board on Tuesday discussed convening an Energy Efficiency Ad Hoc Committee, which Superintendent Martin Lexmond explained would primarily assist district staff with the bidding process for energy efficiency projects, with a focus on potential cost savings.

Board members expressed support for the idea of bringing community expertise into the project, but wanted more information about the exact role and scope of the committee and how it would fit in with the roles of district staff involved in the Honeywell project.

The committee would primarily work with Business Manager Mark Boehlke and Working Foreman Tony Seidita to oversee the project.

"To me it's a little unclear what the responsibility and role of that committee would be and how it would be helpful for us," Boehlke said. "We'd have to really define that."

President Rob Reinhoffer said it would be important to ensure that establishing such a committee would not create inefficiencies in the process of reviewing project bids.

Seidita noted that in the past, bids for similar projects have been reviewed by the Land Use Committee, which provided a level of expertise to the process. Seidita said staff could discuss establishing a certain dollar amount for determining which projects would require committee review.

Honeywell Account Executive Ron Garrison said that Honeywell is primarily concerned with using the best contractors on energy efficiency projects - ones that either the company or the district has experience with - and is not necessarily bound by rules related to obtaining the lowest bidder. However, the $2.6 million price tag for the project is guaranteed, Garrison said, although it's possible the final cost could be lower.

The Honeywell project includes updating lighting and heating control systems and replacing lighting and motors, among other projects, throughout the district.

The ad hoc committee proposal will be brought back to the School Board for further discussion and possible action, Lexmond said.