Belpre BOE to hold special meeting

BELPRE – The Belpre City Schools District will hold a special meeting Monday to discuss two issues regarding school property.

Board members will first continue discussions of whether the district should participate in the Ohio House Bill 264, also known as the Ohio School Facilities Energy Conservation Program, to fund needed heating changes to the high school facilities.

During the February board meeting, Superintendent Tony Dunn approached the board about the problems the district is facing with the furnances in all facilities, except in the recently renovated administration building. He stated the high school’s system is the worst in the district and needs something to be done soon.

The current system is a converted coal furnace that is at the end of its life, is constantly not working and parts are no longer being made for it. Maintenance officials with the district had been manufacturing parts themselves, but that is no longer feasible, Dunn said.

“We have whole wings of the high school that cannot be heated because the furnace for that area has quit working and we no longer have the parts to fix them,” said Dunn. “”The HVAC systems in the district are to the point they will have to be replaced because we can no longer find parts to fix them.”

Rough estimates from Energy Optimizers, a company that specializes in cost-cutting energy savings for schools and commercial and industrial facilities out of Tipp City, Ohio, are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Dunn recommended the Ohio House Bill 264 because it will allow the district to loan the funds at a low interest rate and pay it back over 15 years with the funds saved on energy bills.

The other issue to be discussed is the sale of property at 2014 Washington Blvd., the site of the former administration building.

It is not known if a buyer has come forward.

The building and property was put on the market in late 2009, and in March 2012 the board approved to demolish the structure to make the land more enticing to buyers without a former school on it.

The meeting will be held at 6 p.m. at the Stone Administration Building at 2014 Rockland Ave. in the gymnasium.