2014-06-22 / News

Honeywell gets the green light

By Jeanne Marcello
Staff Reporter

CHESANING – “We’ve done everything you asked and more,” Dick Williams of the Energy Solutions division of Honeywell told the Chesaning Village Council during the June 17 board meeting. The Honeywell staff needed the village council to make decisions about which buildings the village wants to incorporate into the energy savings plan; which is designed to pay for specific capital improvements in the village.

Resident Jack Barrett expressed skepticism over the idea that the village building improvements could be paid for through energy savings. Village President Joe Sedlar, Jr. responded, “Jack, I was just as skeptical as you are. I know it’s hard to believe but it’s proven.” Sedlar explained that Honeywell would cut the village a check for the difference if they didn’t reap enough in energy savings to pay for the building renovations. It’s designed to be a 20 year plan, whereby energy savings recovered pay for improvements to those buildings.

Honeywell has been doing projects like this for many years; Williams has been involved in 350 such projects.

“So the actual cost to the village is zilch?” Treasurer Ken Valentine asked. Sedlar confirmed it explaining that if it isn’t, Honeywell writes the village a check to cover the rest.

With the village’s approval, Williams would move forward applying for a Qualified Energy Conservation Bond (QECB) and a capital improvement bond for the projects. “If you go with a QECB, you’ll save $883,000,” Williams said. But they first need to know which buildings would be included in the project.

Sedlar told Williams that they would go with the original list proposed, with the exception of the old fire barn, which they plan to sell.

Councilman Don Swartzmiller commented, “I have a problem with that one”; although he did not elaborate why he did not support the sale of the fire barn.

While there were still some variables that had not yet materialized, Sedlar said, “We can’t keep spinning our wheels.”

Councilman Damion Frasier moved to approve the initial list of village properties proposed for improvements, with the exception of the old fire barn. The list includes the village office building, Peet Community Center, the wastewater treatment plant, and the DPW Barn. The motion was approved.

Chesaning Chamber of Commerce President Randy Stoddard asked, “So where does the Chamber stand?” The village council and chamber board of directors had discussed the possibility of creating a municipal complex where the chamber office would reside alongside the village office and police department.

Frasier responded, “The easiest thing would be to do a condo out of it.”

Stoddard said, “We are responsible to our membership. We would need to present it. The chamber owns enough property there.” He seemed to be optimistic about the potential for a municipal complex on the chamber property. “I think we’re on the same page,” Stoddard said.

Frasier said, “It’s downtown. There’s plenty of parking.”

“It’s the perfect setting,” Stoddard said.

If the village decides to pursue the municipal complex with the chamber, then the village office building would be dropped from the energy project.

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