The Hoquiam School District will receive over $200,000 in Energy Efficiency Grants from the state. Hoquiam is among 29 school districts across the state are being collectively awarded $9 million for school facility energy efficiency improvements, the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction announced this week.
The projects will produce immediate and long-term energy and operational savings, improve the indoor environmental qualities of our schools and help stimulate construction-industry jobs in the state. The energy grant projects leverage state capital dollars with utility incentives, energy savings and local money to make improvements that may otherwise not be affordable.
The 29 projects have a total project cost of $38.3 million.
“We aren’t the only state working on reducing our energy use, but we are one of the best,” said State Superintendent Randy Dorn. (According to the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, Washington ranks eighth in the nation.) “These improvements do more than just reduce energy,” Dorn said. “They remove obsolete heating and lighting equipment, keep cold winter breezes out and help create safer parking lots and walkways. The greatest change is that the improvements in the classrooms make concentrating on learning less of a challenge”
In all, 50 school districts applied for grant funding for school infrastructure and building system improvements with more than $50.1 million in total project costs.
To qualify for the funds, districts must conduct an investment-grade audit of their school facilities to identify projects that would yield energy savings and be most beneficial overall. The districts are required to measure, verify and report the actual energy savings.
Similar funding by the state Legislature for energy efficiency has been granted to school districts beginning in 2009. To date, OSPI has granted nearly $134 million to 176 school districts around the state.
For more information on these energy grants, or to view a map of all the energy grants by district, visit OSPI’s School Facilities Energy Grant Program Web site.