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At the last Herricks school board meeting, Superintendent Dr. Jack Bierwirth announced that due to the energy efficiency of the district, the district has received a rebate from Long Island Power Authority (LIPA).

In order to receive the rebate, Herricks upgraded the lighting system in classrooms, replaced more than 1,200 fixtures with energy-efficient high performance T8 light bulbs and installed 88 occupancy sensors. Due to these improvements, it is estimated that Herricks will save up to 84,245,85 kilowatt hours (kwh) per year. The total cost of the project was $516, 635. Through its participation in Efficiency Long Island, Herricks was able to offset the cost with a $35,620 LIPA rebate.

Dr. Bierwirth said, "We are extremely pleased to have partnered with LIPA on this project that is saving us an enormous amount of money. With the savings it has enabled us to cut our utility line in the 2009-'10 budget. The more money we save on energy efficiency the more we have to invest in the students and save on taxes. It's a win-win."

Lighting accounts for the largest portion of energy used in commercial buildings, sometimes accounting for 25 to 30 percent of a facility's total energy consumption.

The energy efficiency measures taken by Herricks under this initiative will have the equivalent effect of reducing 11 cars from the road for one year.

Superintendent of Facilities and Grounds James Brown announced that the district was going to take the LIPA rebate money and change the lighting in the gym at the high school, in the cafeteria at the Herricks Community Center and in the lobby of the Herricks Community Theater. When all that is completed he said the district will once again apply for another rebate from LIPA.

Superintendent Bierwirth commented, "The students will no longer have orange lighting when it's time to take their SAT exams. And Brown added, "The new light will even make it cooler in the gym."

Efficiency Long Island is a 10-year $924 million energy efficiency program launched this year which offers a wide array of incentives, rebates and initiatives to LIPA's residential and commercial customers to assist them in reducing their energy usage and thereby lowering their bills.

LIPA's Commercial Construction Program is part of Efficiency Long Island: to learn more visit the website at www.lipower.org/efficiency/commercial.html.


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