Southwick partners with Eversource for energy efficiencies

SOUTHWICK – Southwick is partnering with Eversource on a capital project that will create energy efficiencies at Town Hall and the fire and police stations.

Bill Bullock, supervisor of energy efficiency for Eversource, met with the Southwick Select Board on Jan. 7 to discuss the findings of an energy audit in the buildings and get the board’s approval to move forward.

Bullock said Eversource received two proposals from Green Energy to perform the work, which includes new exterior lighting at Town Hall and in the parking lot. The existing lights would be replaced with LEDs.

“It would cost $13,700,” said Bullock. “We’re providing $9,700 as an incentive with zero percent financing for the balance, which would be part of the electric bill.”

Cost for improvements at the fire station on Depot Street would be much higher.

“The Fire Department will cost $74,500,” said Bullock. “The incentive is $39,500, so the town would finance $34,000.”

The police station report is not finalized, but would reflect similar savings and financing.

Select Board members unanimously approved the plan Tuesday. Chairman Russ Fox said he had personal experience with the Eversource efficiency program.

“As a small business owner I took advantage of the [Eversource] small business program,” he said, which offers similar efficiency savings at no upfront cost. “The work was excellent – it was almost too good to be true.”

Fox asked Bullock about changing out the town’s decorative streetlights along the main corridor to LEDs at a lower LED rate, noting there are 58 such lights.

“There is a rate change, and the town needs to own the lights,” Bullock said.

Chief Administrative Officer Karl Stinehart said the town does own the lights and asked how the town could upgrade them.

“There are retro-fit kits,” Bullock said. “I’ll look into it for you.”

Bullock said LED lights last longer than traditional bulbs, produce more light and are energy efficient.


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