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					Oregon Stimulus Funds at Work:                                                      School Dist:........... Fossil 21J


Fossil
                                                                                    Project Type: ......... Lighting Retrofit
                                                                                    Stimulus Funds: ... $74,088
                                                                                    Savings/yr: ............ $2,952



  New school lighting has small Oregon town talking
       “It’s the talk of the town,” Fossil School Dis-                  The Wheeler High School gym lights were
  trict 21J Superintendent Brad Sperry said of the                 paid for with stimulus funds in the first round of
  new lights in the town’s elementary and high                     awards announced by the Oregon Department of
  school. “Before, kids could hide in the hallways                 Energy in the fall of 2009. The project consisted
  because it was so dark that you literally couldn’t               of replacing 32 400-Watt metal halide lamps with
  see them. It was really a safety issue.”                         six-lamp T-8 high efficiency fixtures. The
                                   Because the high                $15,710 project was paid for with $15,360 in
                               school gym serves as                stimulus funds and $350 from Columbia Basin
                               an unofficial                       Cooperative electric utility.
                               “community center” for                   The classroom and other lights at Wheeler
                               sport events, art festi-            High and all the elementary lights were replaced
                               vals and recitals, the              with new energy efficient lights in another round
                               new gym lights re-                  of lighting awards made in March 2010. This pro-
                               ceived the most atten-              ject came in approximately $2,600 under budget
                               tion.                               at $58,728 with all costs paid for with stimulus
                                   “We got comments                funds.
                               like ‘I need sunglasses!’                Contractors installed the Wheeler High gym
  and ‘I don’t need a flash anymore                                                lights in December and the class-
  for my camera,’” said Sperry. “It                                                room lights in May. The work was
  created quite a buzz.”                                                           done with little disruption. Contrac-
       And it should. Fossil, located in         “This job had a                   tors arranged to work during
  a peaceful valley in North Central
  Oregon, is 72 miles from the near-
                                                definite impact on                 school hours in vacated class-
                                                                                   rooms when possible or after
  est urban area. The town of 450 is              our business,”                   regular school hours.
  a picture of the Old West. Cattle                             - Dan McHale            The Wheeler High gym lights
                                                        President Hire Electric
  drives go right down the middle of                                               are expected to reduce lighting
  Highway 19. No one blinks an eye                                                 electrical use by 50 percent saving
  at horseback riders on Main Street. Visitors can                 approximately $1,398 per year. The classroom
  actually dig for their very own fossil in the middle             lighting project is expected to save 61 percent of
  of town. So, when the elementary and high                        lighting electrical use or $1,554 per year.
  school get new energy efficient lights to replace                     “We are pleased to make this award to the
  lights (many that were original fixtures), it is in-             Fossil School District,” said Shell’ Honeywell,
  deed, big news for the tiny town.                                manager of the Oregon Department of Energy
       Wheeler High School, built in 1949, sits on a               grants team. “Not only will
  hillside above Fossil Elementary and Main                        students and staff enjoy a
  Street. It serves 48 students in grades 7-12. Fos-               learning environment with
  sil Elementary, built in 1925, serves 43 students.               better lighting, but the funds
  The lighting projects were paid for primarily with               will put local contractors to
  American Recovery and Reinvestment (stimulus)                    work.”
  funds awarded by the Oregon Department of
  Energy through its State Energy Plan.
             The “local” contractor for the Fossil lighting
        projects was Hire Electric with headquarters in
        The Dalles.
             “This job had a definite impact on our busi-
        ness,” said Dan McHale, president of the 22-
        employee family-owned business which has
        been in The Dalles since 1935. “Things have
        been really slow. Some of my electricians aren’t
        working full 40-hour weeks and some are on un-
        employment. But I was able to keep two electri-
        cians busy for two weeks on the Fossil job.”
             In addition, McHale said the Fossil job had a
        “trickle-down effect.” “It kept our material handler
        and supplier busy. All the way around, it helped,”                          Fossil School District Superintendent Brad Sperry (left), and
        McHale said.                                                                Deputy Clerk Cistie Shaffer confer with Paul Egbert, Oregon
                                                                                    Department of Energy Project Manager, concerning some of
             The two electricians stayed in Fossil for the
                                                                                    the documentation required.
        job and ate at local restaurants which also
        helped the Fossil economy.
             “It’s gratifying to see energy projects have                           ting federal funds. Recipient funds must ensure
        such an impact on these rural schools and busi-                             that all federal regulations are followed. These
        nesses,” said Paul Egbert, Lead SEP Project                                 include paying Davis-Bacon wages, getting ap-
        Manager. “They are very appreciative of the                                 proval from the State Historical Preservation Of-
                             funds and the positive impact it                       fice, ensuring that all equipment is in compliance
                             has had for the kids.”                                 with the Buy American Act, interviewing all work-
                                 Cistie Shaffer, deputy clerk                       ers on the job, ensuring all official notices identi-
                             with the Fossil School District                        fying the federally funded project are visible, and
                             for 25 years and a Wheeler                             making sure that all reporting is done in a timely
                             High School graduate, is well                          and accurate manner.
                             aware of the difference. “The                               “Cistie did a wonderful job,” said Egbert.
                             old lights gave out a yellow light.                    “She had to keep on top of a lot of details, in ad-
                             Now they’re white,” she said.                          dition to her regular work. I was impressed how a
                             “Best of all, the annoying hum-                        small school district with limited resources ac-
        ming sound of the old lights is gone. Sometimes                             complished what it did.”
        we wouldn’t even turn on the old lights because                                  Now that the lighting project is complete, Su-
        the noise was so distracting.”                                              perintendent Sperry is considering his next pro-
             Even the cafeteria cook commented that she                             ject—painting the inside of Wheeler High this
        can read her recipe from her prep area. She                                 summer.
        doesn’t have to walk to an area beneath a light                                  “It’s also a no-cost project,” said Sperry.
        to read it.                                                                 “Donated paint and labor.”
             Although the lighting projects were paid for,                               Just like the towns of the Old West, Fossil
        there is considerable work that comes with get-                             residents pull together and show pride in their
                                                                                    schools.


The Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) awarded this energy project with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (stimulus) funds through the State
Energy Program. These funds are designated for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. The U.S. Department of Energy administers the funds,
approves the projects and reviews the state’s progress. The Oregon Department of Energy received $42.1 million in SEP funding. All projects must be
completed by February 15, 2012.

This material is based upon work supported by the Department of Energy under Award Number #DE-FOA-0000052. This report was prepared as an ac-
count of work sponsored by an agency of the United States Government. Neither the United States Government nor any agency thereof, nor any of their
employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any
information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. Reference herein to any specific
commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement,
recommendation, or favoring by the United States Government or any agency thereof. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not neces-
sarily state or reflect those of the United States Government or any agency thereof.

				
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