Thursday, January 29th 2015

paintthetown-20120530-0558_hdr“A contract for the start of construction on $5.9 million in energy and water conservation measures at Chester County government facilities was introduced to the Chester County Board of Commissioners at today’s Sunshine meeting. The contract, presented by Chester County Director of Facilities and Parks, Steve Fromnick, includes conservation measures guaranteed to provide $6.7 million in cost savings through the county’s 15-year energy performance contract with Constellation.

“Through our strategic plan focus on the environment, we have already taken great strides to reduce energy usage within county-owned buildings,” said Terence Farrell, Chester County Commissioners’ Chair. “This new project reflects our continued commitment to implement water and energy saving measures for the good of the environment, but that also have the benefit of bringing a monetary return to the county.”

Commissioner Kathi Cozzone noted: “Like many other large businesses and organizations, Chester County government is facing a situation where aging facilities, volatile energy costs and capital constraints make operating buildings cost-effectively a major challenge. Since 2010, we have decreased our electricity usage within county facilities significantly and reduced our energy expenditure by more than 20 percent, but there is much more that we can do to reduce our carbon footprint. Entering into this contract with Constellation will allow us to enhance our energy efficiency efforts, improve our facilities and make major strides towards water conservation.”

“By implementing the water and energy conservation measures proposed by Constellation, Chester County will be saving an estimated 2.2 million kilowatt-hours in electricity and more than 18 million gallons of water every year,” added Commissioner Michelle Kichline. “Energy performance contracting is a valuable resource for allowing us to leverage our existing operational budgets for needed capital improvements – all while helping to reach our environmental goals.”

A Chester County task force researched and prepared a “request for quotes” and a “request for proposals” from Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) that identify water and energy savings opportunities and the costs associated with conservation and facility improvements. The task force included representatives from the Facilities & Parks, Purchasing and Finance departments.

In his recommendation of Constellation to the Commissioners, Steve Fromnick said: “Constellation representatives showed the greatest understanding of Chester County’s needs and our vision for facility improvement and energy conservation. The company’s proposal offered more measures for the dollars, and demonstrated the most attractive cash flows based on our investment.

“The $6.7 million in savings is guaranteed by Constellation. If our utility costs are not reduced by this amount following our investment, then Constellation makes up the shortfall.”