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09/07/2021 EC Minutes

TOWN OF BETHLEHEM
2155 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH 03574

Bethlehem Energy Commission

Tuesday Sept 7 at 7:00pm

In-Person at Bethlehem Library

 

Attending:  David Van Houten, Dan Crosby, Mary Lou Krambeer

Excused:  Bruce Caplain, Chuck Phillips, Mark Koprowski (on leave)

Public:  Melissa Elander (Clean Energy, NH advisor); Chris McGrath

 

Agenda

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.

 

Review minutes from last meeting

Dan moves to accept August 7 minutes, David second.  Unanimously accepted.

 

Town solar project

David gave two sets of tours to 7 contractors (Revision; David Van Zant; Aegis – from Wakesfield, VT; Granite State Solar; iSun)     Deadline for questions were due last week – three questions (request for a map, voltage/amps to each building, and what the plan for solar panels on the library looked like).  Another question that arose is how many companies are bidding on the project.  That seemed like an unclear question as we don’t know for sure, so we’re not including that in the list of questions that are being asked.

 

Timetable

Proposals due Sept 16 at 5:00.  Decision on choosing a contractor Oct 18.

Our process for review.

Sept 16 David will receive proposals

Oct 7 read vendor names and bids at BEC meeting

Oct 18 Contact all bidders

 

Funding

Mary Lou and Bruce are talking to many funding sources to figure out what sources we may propose.

They have spoken with USDA RD, Grafton County, NCIC, NHCF, CDFA, Eversource, and BES

David has spoken to Karen Cramton of the Sustainable Energy Division at PUC grants

 

Also, Bruce and Josiah spoke to Bethlehem Trail Assoc about possibly relocating solar array.  They appreciated the update and are supportive of the project.  Jim McCann said keep in mind a lot of volunteer hours have gone into the existing trails.

 

Other

  • Bethlehem waste water treatment center may be a tie-in point for group net metering as there is room down there.
  • Profile Solar may be up and running in October 2021
  • Group Metering – what are the ways in which we can group meter? Do we have to split the meter physically or is it an accounting process?
  • Rates: the electric rate has just gone up from 6.6 cents to 8.8 cents (up 30%) – although this is variable over time
  • Local Energy Solutions Conference success stories Oct 8 – David (5-minute presentation)

 

Town Hall

HVAC report done now we are waiting on estimates although contractors are so busy, tough to get the figures.  We should get that by Sept 15.

Fix existing propane boiler system, switch to pellets, put in air source heat pumps, heat recovery ventilation system.

There is the envelope report to review in the context of the HVAC report.

 

Infrastructure

$ coming for infrastructure.  Thinking ahead we will need to keep in mind how we can look at a bigger  picture of how to make sure energy efficiencies and renewables

 

TO DO

  • Bruce will talk to Primex

 

Next meeting date

Sept 21 at 7pm at the library

 

Public input

Chris McGrath suggested we track our hours so that when we speak to the public we can explain how much research has gone into this project.

 

Next meeting date

Tuesday, Sept 21 at 7pm at the library  — handling of bids

Tuesday, Oct 5 at 7pm at the library

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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.

 

To find BEC info go to: www.bethlehemnh.org

-go to government tab

-our committee is listed under: boards and committees tab

-our meetings are posted through Nicole on: agendas and minutes tab

Nicole also posts a hard copy of meeting notices in the Town Hall and at the post office.

 

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