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Partnership with Energy Optimizers expected to save Austintown Local Schools an estimated $153,000 annually

April 26, 2018
The Town Crier

Austintown Local Schools expects to save more than $153,000 annually by transitioning to LED lighting in partnership with Energy Optimizers, USA, an energy management solutions firm.

Starting in April, Energy Optimizers, USA, will retrofit the interior and exterior lighting systems at all five of the district's buildings with LED systems. Lighting in the Austintown Falcons' football stadium and baseball field will also undergo an overhaul to the more energy-efficient lighting solution. The lighting comes with a 25-year material warranty.

"Our 2020 Strategic Plan calls for us ensure our students are achieving at or above grade-level expectations and to demonstrate fiscal responsibility to our community," said Superintendent Vincent Colaluca. "This project is going to help us accomplish both by delivering a tremendous savings that we can direct to our classrooms."

The savings will be gained through both improved energy efficiency and lower maintenance costs. LED lighting uses an average of 60 percent less energy and lasts five times longer than the systems being replaced. The district will also make use of First Energy incentives, which is expected to net an additional $50,000 in energy rebates.

The benefits to the district's students and staff extend well beyond cost savings. LED lighting offers a quality of light that is very close to natural sunlight, which will result in better-lit and more comfortable learning environments. In addition, LEDs do not have the hum and flicker associated with fluorescent lighting, making it an ideal lighting system for special needs classrooms.

The partnership also includes funding for a district-wide Energy Education & Awareness Program that will invite students, staff and the community to develop, promote and implement numerous energy savings and sustainability programs throughout the district while being aligned with the state testing standards.

The district "Green Team" will include scholarships for participating students, an educational trip to The Ohio State University to build a district "Energy Bike," a 5KW solar array to supplement classroom lessons and numerous after-school activities to promote and educate the students, staff and community about energy efficiency and sustainability.

"Austintown students and staff will benefit from a lighting program that doesn't just save the district money; they will also gain real-world insights into STEM-related concepts and career opportunities," said Greg Smith, president of Energy Optimizers, USA. "And that's exactly why we do what we do; we want to help our school partners save money, save the environment and prepare their students to do great things in the world."



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