County Commissioners To Consider Tower, Power Saturday

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If persistence does indeed pay off, Katelynn Pastor could leave Saturday's quarterly meeting of the Cannon County Commission a very happy person.

Pastor, who represents Schneider Electric, has been a frequent visitor at meetings of the Cannon County Board of Education over the past several months, and also spoke at an informal joint meeting of members of the school board and county commission.

Schneider Electric is trying to get the school system to sign on to an energy savings project. Its program is designed to engineer a system to be utilized by the schools to make them energy efficient through planned electrical uses.

"I will be addressing the commission on Cannon County Schools' energy savings project," Pastor said. "Schneider Electric has found significant potential energy savings within the schools' facilities and we will be presenting this information to the commission.

"The school board is looking for the commission's approval of the project thus far so the school might move to the development stage of the project. Because the county manages the schools' budget the school system wanted to get the county's approval first before making a financial commitment."

Basically, Schneider will act as a contractor and will bring in sub-contractors to do certain repairs to the different schools to make them come into compliance with what the company says will save the school system and county money. They will have their engineers come in to inspect the buildings, and then draft a plan to save this particular building money on electrical usage.

The preliminary inspection by their engineers will cost $45,000 at the start, but if the school system does not take the project the system will have to pay the amount. If the system does take on the project the money will be absorbed into the total loan. Schneider will make the application for the initial grant which would pay for the initial inspection and they will be there to help attain other grants for the school for this project.

Schnieder Electric representatives have attributed the county's above average energy consumption to antiquated equipment and lack of funding to upgrade.

Schnieder's proposal includes a savings guarantee, with both the total cost of the new system and the projected savings each falling somewhere between $900k and $1.2 million, so the system essentially pays for itself over a 15-year period.

After the initial inspection Schneider will show the county how much they will save each year on power bills. Snhneider will guarantee 85 percent of the yearly loan payment to the lending organization; and if the savings fall short of their projection the company will write a check in an amount that would bring the amount up to their prediction.

Also scheduled to address the commission Saturday is Roy Sullivan, director of the Cannon County 911 Emergency Communications District. Sullivan will present two matters for the commissioners to consider.

"The first presentation is on the inter-local communications agreement that was signed in 2006 and was effective July 1st 2007 giving the 911 District control of all emergency communications and to facilitate the move from the Sheriff's Department and into our own communications center, which was completed on April 14th 2008," Sullivan said.

"It states the county's contribution as well as the City of Woodbury's contribution to help fund the emergency service agencies that serve Cannon County. The agreement was for a period of three years and is due to renew. My recommendation is for the county and city contribution to remain the same for another three years. I don't think it would be prudent at this point in time to ask for additional funding and will readdress that issue in three years."

Sullivan said the second item to discuss is "a resolution to support the construction of a
communications tower on Pleasant Ridge to increase our radio coverage in the county and the District Five, Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI). The project is funded by the District five UASI Homeland Security District and was acquired thru the Cannon County Office of Emergency Management. Since it is Home Land Security funding, it must go thru the county government."

Following is the complete agenda for Saturday's meeting:

The Cannon County Board of Commissioners will meet in regular session on Saturday, April 17, 2010 at 10 a.m. in the courtroom of the Cannon County Courthouse.

Agenda for April 17, 2010

1. Call to Order.

2. Roll Call.

3. Reading and Approval of Minutes.

4. Report of County Officials.

5. Election of Notaries.

6. Budget Amendments - Board of Education.

7. Budget Amendments - County General/Sheriff's Department.

8. Budget Amendments - Solid Waste.

9. Budget Amendments - Highway Department,

10. Director of Schools, Barbara Parker, to address commission.

11. 911 Director, Roy Sullivan, to address the commission concerning interlocal agreement.

12. Approval of commission to accept Homeland Security Grant to construct new emergency communication tower.

13. Kathlynn Pastor with Schneider Electric to address commission concerning schools energy savings project.

14. Other Business.

15. Adjourn.

Mike Gannon
County Executive of Cannon County
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Members Opinions:
April 12, 2010 at 10:47am
I hope the planned tower at Pleasant Ridge isn't an eyesore. This is one of the prettiest places in the county.
April 12, 2010 at 12:14pm
I hope that the County Commission doesn't fall for the Schneider Electric proposal, a 15 year payback is terrible, it is a bad investment.

Similar the the geothermal HVAC system that was installed at WGS, it has cost tens of thousands more in repairs and maintenance costs that it will ever save in energy.
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