GUILDERLAND: District gets kudos for energy saving

In the face of rising energy prices, the Guilderland Central School District has taken steps to combat costs through conservation.

At a meeting of the school board on Tuesday, Dec. 12, the board was presented with the Energy Pacesetter Award by Energy Education, Inc. (EEI), a national conservation company.

In the 13 months since the district formed a strategic alliance with Energy Education, district schools have achieved a 22 percent cost savings, totaling $510,512.

William S. Spears, chief executive officer and founder of EEI, said the level of savings Guilderland has reached is a significant achievement. He complimented the job the district has done in implementing the company's people-oriented approach to energy conservation.

The superintendent and school board, along with other administration, faculty and staff members are to be commended for clearly fulfilling their commitment to being good stewards of the taxpayers' money and the environment, said Spears. "Strong support from Superintendent Greg Aidala and the board of education has created an atmosphere of cooperation that should continue to grow and ensure even greater success well into the future."

In October 2005, the board of education adopted an energy management conservation policy to outline plans to address energy management within its 10 district buildings. The district began working with EEI to identify ways to better monitor and conserve energy the previous March.

The goals of the program are to protect the environment, aid the district in maintaining a quality learning and work environment, changing energy use mindsets and help save money that the district can reinvest in its ongoing activities.

Neil Sanders, assistant superintendent for business, said the expected cost savings are accounted for prior to the upcoming budget year, and the money is redirected to other district programs.

"We've budgeted with the expectation that money would be saved," he said.

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