Cazenovia Board of Education Plans an Energy Savings Building Project

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District Invites Voters to Cast a Ballot January 14th

The U.S. Department of Energy defines Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) as “a budget-neutral approach to make building improvements that reduce energy and water use and increase operational efficiency.”  By partnering with an Energy Service Company (ESCO), a building owner pays for today’s facility upgrades with tomorrow’s energy savings – and without tapping into capital budgets.  The EPC is an 18-year commitment that pays for itself through a combination of energy savings, New York State building aid and various energy improvement incentives available.

After careful review of proposals, an extensive interview process, and a great deal of discussion the Cazenovia Board of Education selected Day Automation to be the district’s (ESCO) to coordinate a capital project focusing on energy efficiencies and related cost-saving measures.

This EPC has been a collaborative process between the District and Day Automation.  The result will be more comfortable, better lit, and more energy-efficient buildings all with no increase in taxes to taxpayers. The Board is  excited to present to voters the numerous, environmentally friendly, energy-saving improvements that will be realized. Doing it all at no additional cost to the community is the icing on the cake!

The improvements planned for all Cazenovia instructional buildings include:

  • LED Lighting Upgrades – all interior and exterior traditional lighting will be retrofitted to become LED fixtures. Control systems will further increase energy savings.
  • HVAC System Controls Upgrades – intelligent automated systems will improve heating and cooling and dynamically provide appropriate levels of airflow based upon occupancy
  • Sealing of Building Envelopes – reduction of unwanted outside air infiltration will be accomplished by installing/upgrading: door sweeps, weather-stripping, window caulk, exhaust fan sealing, roof/wall interface seals and louver gap seals
  • Installation of small, rooftop solar arrays – 5kw to 10kw solar arrays will be installed on the rooftop of Burton elementary and Emory Ave middle/high school.  The solar arrays and related systems will be used for educational purposes as well as generating electricity.

A 15-year serial bond will be taken out by the District to cover the project cost up to $2.2M.  Please note: the Board approved up to $2.2M, but it is likely that once the final scope is determined the cost will be likely considerably less (recent estimates were at just under $2M).  With voter approval, approximately 67% of the serial bond payments will be covered by State Aid. By law, the Board of Education has the authority to enter into an EPC, but by obtaining voter approval the project becomes eligible for an additional 10% of building aid resulting in even greater cost savings.

Approximately $100,000 of incentives from organizations such as NYSERDA will also be put toward the cost.  The remainder of the bond payments are from operating funds freed up by money saved by guaranteed energy savings.  If projected energy savings are not realized the ESCO pays the difference to the District.

“It really is as good as it sounds,” said Assistant Superintendent and Business Official, Thomas Finnerty.  “We can make a great deal of improvement to our buildings that not only save the district money, but are also better for the environment.  To be able to accomplish both of these without requiring additional money from taxpayers makes it even better!”

The Board invites taxpayers to vote in the Middle School Auxiliary Gymnasium from noon to 9pm on January 14, 2020.  The Board plans to hold a public information night one week prior on January 7, 2020 at 6:00 pm in the high school auditorium. If you have any questions regarding this exciting project, please feel free to contact Assistant Superintendent Thomas Finnerty at tfinnerty@caz.cnyric.org.

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