Environmental grants being awarded to area governments
Clarkesville: Water treatment plant retrofit. Cost: $247,500.
Cornelia: HVAC and lighting retrofit for fire station. Cost: $44,982.
Dawson, Lumpkin counties: Indoor lighting upgrades with LED lighting technology at government buildings in Dawson and Lumpkin counties, including Dawsonville City Hall. Cost: $313,086.
Flowery Branch: Retrofits at the city's wastewater treatment plant. Cost: $204,630.
Gainesville: Replace the gas-fired boiler at the Georgia Mountains Center with an Energy Star boiler, replace two roof-top HVAC units at the Community Service Center and establish a revolving loan fund for future energy efficiency projects. Also proposed are HVAC energy efficiency retrofits at the city's Georgia Mountains Center, traffic division building, maintenance shop, vehicle services building and the Joint Administration Building. Cost: $300,000.
Helen: Retrofit wastewater treatment plant with energy-efficient water pumps, motors and diffusers. Cost: $120,000.
Source: Georgia Office of the Governor
Several area counties and cities, including Gainesville and Flowery Branch, are receiving a combined $1.4 million in energy efficiency grants provided through federal stimulus funding.
The governments received the money through the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program administered by the Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority.
Some $13.3 million is being distributed to 64 small and medium-sized communities in Georgia. The state’s largest cities and counties received similar grants directly from the U.S. Department of Energy.
Gainesville received $300,000 to replace the gas-fired boiler at the Georgia Mountains Center with an energy-efficient boiler; replace two roof-top heating, ventilation and air conditioning units at the Community Service Center; and set up a revolving loan fund for future energy efficiency projects.
The city is considering HVAC projects at the Mountains Center, traffic division building, maintenance shop, vehicle services building and the Joint Administration Building.
Flowery Branch is getting $204,630 for retrofits at the city’s wastewater treatment plant on Atlanta Highway.
“The city is certainly pleased to be entrusted with these funds for the betterment of our (plant),” said City Manager Bill Andrew. “These funds will create efficiencies ... that will save the city energy costs and assist in keeping carbon out of the environment, all while producing a very clean wastewater.”
Helen, Clarkesville, Cornelia and Dawson and Lumpkin counties also are receiving grants.
“Investment in energy efficient infrastructure creates jobs, promotes economic development and increases our citizens’ quality of life,” said Gov. Sonny Perdue. “Financing renewable energy projects encourages good stewardship of our environment.”
The Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority received 84 applications for the grant money, funding 54 projects.