Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Performance contracting in CT, but not in Cheshire

As we all know... it's fine to engage in performance contracts in Washington DC, but not in Connecticut... oh wait... did I get that right?

Is it possible to create a comprehensive energy action plan in CT? One that also helps to protect the environment and save money?

What's this posted on the EPAs website from Dec 15, 2003?

Spurred by the prospect of large cost savings on energy bills and growing citizen interest in less-polluting energy sources, communities as big as Hartford and as small as Windham are developing formal action plans that document where energy dollars are being spent and where energy reductions and cost savings can be found in buildings, street lights, transportation or disposing trash.

Absolute craziness!

But are there any other towns that engage in such folly?

The Dec. 15, 2003 EPA article continues:

Fairfield has saved more than $1 million on its energy bills the past two years thanks to energy efficiency improvements at two-dozen municipal buildings and school buildings, as well as the town’s wastewater plant. The work has been done through a Performance Contract with an energy services company which guarantees the town $7.5 million in energy savings over an eight-year period. By mid-2004, the wastewater facility will be generating more than $500,000 of electricity a year using such alternative power sources as fuel cells, solar panels and methane gas.

But I guess Cheshire is just smarter than everybody else.

Tim White


Anonymous said...

thank you for the information, sounds good.

Bill said...

Way back in the late 1990's under the leadership of the previous Town Manager there was an RFQ for energy efficiencies for schools. A firm I was working with replied and we were rejected because we had not done a school. We had done Compaq Computer headquarters in Texas, Sandia National Lab, Lawrence Livermore National Lab, PS&G facilities in California, several Texas Instruments buildings and the list goes on. We were awarded the "Most Energy Efficient Building in the World in 1996" but because we had never done a school we were removed from the potential bidders list.

This is an example of why performance contracting does not work in Cheshire. A lack of vision, leadership and willingness to attempt, at a minimum, to understand new approaches to problems. It is easy to find excuses not to do something, it takes leadership to admit you may not know and want to learn.

Anonymous said...

It’s all about the money 740. Not so much the money of individual tax payers but the money of local special interests. We all seem to being paying a premium because of our Zip Code. The tax payers seem oblivious to just how much the good ole status quo is costing residents. First came the switch from selectman form of local government to a town council form. Most recently the town has finally transitioned to a majority council who believes in tax and spend politics. What’s next, performance contracting for the well connected local businesses?

Anonymous said...

"A lack of vision, leadership and willingness to attempt, at a minimum, to understand new approaches to problems."

Bill, I don't think it is that. This Dem council along with the TM will not take town contracts away from the local boys or their friends. They support the special interest groups regardless of the risks, cost to the taxpayers and they overlook any negative aspects. They were unanimous in favor of the mall that would greatly benefit the local owners and they didn't care about the negative effect on the environment, the impact on the sewer system, the impact on the school system, traffic, local businesses, the character of Cheshire, strain on fire, police budgets and on and on ..................

These people simply serve the special interests and the rest of us can keep paying ever more taxes and see our town eroded into the all too familiar Queen Street sprawl.