USD 410 board approves purchase of $300,000 computerized temperature control package

ORIGINALLY WRITTEN NANCY MILLER
The USD 410 Board of Education approved the purchase and installation of a computerized temperature control system for Hillsboro High School and Middle School at a special school board meeting Wednesday.


At the board’s regular meeting earlier in the month, Ben Trout, president of EPM, Inc., the system’s manufacturer, made his case to the board.


The board hired an independent engineer to review the proposal and make a recommendation about purchasing the system.


The engineer, Billy Keeling of Environmental Projects, highly recommended the system. After considering other alternatives such as physical building changes, Keeling found that the long-term energy savings from a CTC system would be significant.


Keeling conservatively estimated savings to be about 19 percent each year.


“When considering the energy savings and the maintenance savings, this system should pay back in approximately four years,” said Keeling in a letter to the board.


After evaluating the buildings, Keeling sent letters to four different companies capable of installing the CTC system. Only EPM, Inc., the original presenter, responded with a bid.


Keeling recommended that the board accept the bid. The proposal includes the basic CTC system as well as a voltage-protection mechanism and a monitoring system.


The cost of the system was projected at $293,762. This takes into account the 10 percent discount offered by EPM if the system was installed before June 1, 2001.


“It is our recommendation that we would enter into an agreement with EPM to install the CTC system,” said Gordon Mohn, USD 410 superintendent.


The board unanimously approved the recommendation.


Bids for financing the project were received from two local banks. A lease-purchasing agreement was offered by Emprise Bank at 5.80 percent over 10 years.


This agreement would extend over 10 years, beginning March 1, 2002. The principal amount of the lease-purchase is $300,762, which accounts for the cost of the CTC system as well as the independent engineer’s fee.


The board approved the lease-purchase agreement, 5-0.

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