The Northwest Local School Board will install solar panels for three of its buildings as part of a 25-year energy contract.
The sun is a welcome sight, even more so for the Northwest school district now that a proposal has been approved to add solar panels to its campus. At a meeting on October 11th, the school board approved a proposal to install solar panels on the campus property directly south of the High School. A deal that could supply over 50% of the district’s electricity and produce a financial savings for the district while putting it on a path of responsible clean energy.
The District’s first step toward energy stewardship began in 2015 by participation in Ohio’s HB264 energy savings program. “Our board determined that increasing costs of energy and the need for efficient operation of the buildings were important to our future fiscal responsibility” said Superintendent Todd Jenkins. “After Phase 1 of the energy project, we saw a 22% reduction in our energy usage in the first year. Phase 2 will allow us to produce electricity on our campus for 30% less than the Grid price.” American Renewable Energy (ARE) out of Columbus, Ohio will develop and own the solar array. The school district paid no upfront costs and will pay a fixed rate for the project’s energy produced under a 25- year power purchase agreement. Additionally, the developer will include a battery storage system at each school building that will provide back-up power during outages, and opportunities for greater savings during high peak demand periods of the power grid.
In March, the Solar Committee for the Board of Education received proposals from Ohio based vendors to fully investigate the opportunity for solar. Board member Jill Carver wanted to make sure that Northwest was going to get the best deal possible. “After negotiating with the developers we interviewed, I believe ARE presented the best opportunity for us to see the greatest savings.” The savings projections for the district top $ 700,000 over the next 25 years.
Adam Jones, Solar Committee member, is “proud to be part of this ground breaking venture”. “Not only will the district see a financial benefit, but our students and children will be exposed to the innovation and environmental benefits of the program.”
The construction is expected to be completed by the end of this school year and is anticipated to be one of the largest single producing solar arrays in the Ohio public schools sector.
RESULTS OF THE NEW BOSTON BOARD OF EDUCATION MEETING October 12, 2017
1. Approved bills paid, investment report, financial report and bank reconciliation for September 2017.
2. Adopted 5-year forecast for FY18, 19, 20, 21 and 22.
3. Employed substitute teachers.
4. Employed Beth Hannah and Allison Hurley as home instruction tutors.
5. Recognized Jason Carter as a volunteer for Jr. High Basketball and Josh Holbrook as volunteer
assistant for Girls Basketball.
6. Approved Bidding Requirements policy DJC.
7. Approved addendum to Evaluation of Professional Staff.
8. Approved Glenwood High School Athletics Emergency Action Plan.
9. Employed Michaela Rawlins as substitute aide and Chris Cantor as a substitute custodian pending
10. Recognized Brandi Calway as a parent volunteer.
11. Rescinded resolution number 178-16 for the 003 fund transfer and transfer 003 monies to 034 an
already established fund.
12. Discussed new sign.
The New Boston Board of Education will have a meeting on Thursday, November 9, 2017 at 6:00 p.m.