Knox School Board Looking into Energy-Saving Improvements

The Knox Community School Corporation is exploring the possibility of some energy-saving upgrades. On Monday, the school board voted to issue a request for qualifications for a guaranteed energy savings contract. Under the process, a state-qualified provider guarantees that the work will pay for itself over a certain period of time. If it doesn’t, the provider has to pay the difference.

School officials have already been working with EMCOR Construction Services to identify some electrical, mechanical, and plumbing needs at the corporation’s three schools. Monday’s request for qualifications is the next step in the process, according to EMCOR representative Tim Pitts. “Any energy savings company can turn in a proposal to you guys,” he told board members. “It is a 37-day process, where it’ll be advertised this Friday and again on the following Friday, the first. After those 37 days, you will pick an energy provider to work with, a guaranteed savings provider, to do pieces of mechanical, if you so choose.”

Pitts said that by going through the process, the corporation will satisfy state bidding requirements. “You’re putting us on the team, once you select us in 37 days, and whenever you’re ready to do a project, whether it’s a boiler, chiller, et cetera, or whatever that scope of work may be, we’ll work through the contract,” he said. “We’ll get the contract and bid everything out and have everything fully engineered before we get the contract. And then we, as EMCOR, would self-perform the project.”

He explained that the expected savings would be clearly outlined. “With each, we call them, energy conservation measures, whether it’s a boiler, chiller, et cetera, we’ll show you how much you’re paying now and what your savings will be in the future – and it is a guarantee – if we have a contract for 10 years, 15, up to 20 years. So we’ll show all that to you and break that out, so you’ll see true savings.”

Pitts said that in addition to energy savings, projects that help reduce maintenance costs may also qualify under the program.