06/07/2022 EC Minutes
TOWN OF BETHLEHEM
2155 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH 03574
Bethlehem Energy Commission
Tuesday, June 7, 2022 Meeting
Mission: The Bethlehem Energy Commission was established for the study and planning of energy resources for the town. The commission will evaluate existing energy usage in the town and suggest possible improvements in energy efficiency and conservation, as well as potential clean renewable energy solutions in order to reduce expenses and increase self-reliance.
Attending: Scott Caisse (chairing meeting), Dan Crosby, Mary Lou Krambeer, David Van Houten, Bruce Caplain, Melissa Elander and Gabe Chilius.
Excused: Chuck Phillips
May meeting minutes: motion to approve by Dan, Scott second. Minutes approved.
Public input – Melissa Elander introduced the new business consultant at Clean Energy NH. Gabe Chilius he will be reaching out to businesses throughout the North Country to lower energy use through incentive programs offered by NH. CDFA has a lot of money left over to fund energy audits at businesses (up to 75%). Gabe will be promoting involvement in this program.
Bruce said the last of the three solar contracts have been signed. He also said that Eric Law of USDA RD is now using the Town of Bethlehem as a municipal energy savings role model for municipal solar throughout Vermont/New Hampshire.
Municipal Solar project – Library is done. Solar panel equipment has been delivered to the Highway Dept, installation soon. Trees have been cut behind the school in preparation for the Bethlehem Elementary School solar ground array installation.
Bethlehem Village District – Waste water treatment plant energy efficiency funds are now available. Melissa and David put in a $425,000 DES infrastructure pre-application grant to install solar at the treatment plant and upgrade blower motors that feed the aeration pipes. If received, the grant will cover 50%-75% of the project. If the pre-application is approved, we have 1.5 years to submit the full application.
Scott talked about his home solar system that was just installed. He is open to a home tours showing off his solar panels, batteries, and inverters.
Grafton County ARPA dollars. We have asked the County Commissions to direct ARPA money to Grafton County towns – to incentivize more energy projects. David, Chuck and Mary Lou went to a Commissioner meeting on May 17. We are currently reaching out to other funders, New Hampshire Charitable Foundation and Northern Border Regional Commission, to figure out a way to assist the County in distributing energy dollars to individual towns.
TO DO: Mary Lou will reach out to funders and keep the Commisioners apprised of our activity.
EV bus for Profile HS. Dan — NH legislature passed funding for a competitive bidding process to try out 5 EV bus pilots (VW $). We should present a rural proposal. Jessica Wilcox at DES. Melissa –Electric School Bus program – there is a webinar tomorrow about the EPA electric school bus pilot program. One grant per state. Program open.
TO DO: Dan get more information about project and then reach out to Jessica Wilcox at DES.
Town Hall Energy Audit – we are waiting for a proposal from Shakes to Shingles. It’s been a struggle to get people to come to give us quotes.
EV chargers – 302 is on the State priority corridor list. Melisssa – it is important for DES to hear from folks in smaller communities. $17m available over 5 years. Written comments due by June 10.
TO DO: Scott to draft letter for June 10 submission.
Next BEC meeting: Tue., July 5 at 5:30 at the library. Dan will run the meeting.
Adjourned: at 6:41
Bethlehem Energy Commission (BEC) is appointed by the Select Board. All meetings are open to the public.
Clerical Assistant Nicole McGrath ensures that BEC meeting notices, agendas, and minutes are posted as necessary. Nicole posts a hard copy of meeting notices in the Town Hall and at the post office.
To find BEC info go to: www.bethlehemnh.org
-go to government tab
-our committee is listed under the: boards and committees tab
-our meetings are posted through Nicole on: agendas and minutes tab