School System Looks At Energy Savings During Meeting

Stephens County School System officials provide an update on energy savings to the Board of Education.

During Tuesday’s Stephens County Board of Education meeting, school system staff provided information regarding savings that the school system estimates that it has seen on energy recently.

Stephens County School Superintendent Sherrie Whiten said that the school system’s Energy Manager, Tony Presley, estimates that the school system has saved a lot of money on energy over the past 12 months.

“Tony Presley estimates that over the past 12 months, we have saved around $600,000 in utility costs throughout the system,” said Whiten.

She went on to say that the school system does a number of things designed to try and keep energy costs as low as possible.

“Through our energy manager, he looks at all of the utility bills,” said Whiten. “If there is anything out of line, he wants to know why. Also on our lights, we have dimmer switches. The lights go off when nobody is in there, just a lot of different upgrades.”

Whiten also brought up energy costs at the new Stephens County High School, saying that is something that she and others have been watching as the new building continues to be used.

At this point, Whiten said that the school system is seeing energy savings at the new high school, when compared to the old building.

“Since the (new) high school is a LEED-certified building and it is energy-efficient and has a lot of neat features that are designed to conserve energy and save water, we have been very interested to see if that is paying off,” said Whiten. “Just from what little data we have gotten so far, we have saved around $4,000 just in one billing cycle.”

Whiten said that is something the school system will continue to keep an eye on moving forward.

In other news from Tuesday’s Stephens County Board of Education meeting, the board received the monthly financial report.

That report shows that the school system received nearly $305,500 in E-SPLOST revenues for the month of September. That is about $19,000 more than the school system received in August and about $21,000 more than the E-SPLOST receipts for September 2011.