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Lake Land board hears about energy savings, wind turbine delays  

Credit:  By KAYLEIGH ZYSKOWSKI - H&R Staff Writer | herald-review.com ~~

MATTOON – The Lake Land College Board of Trustees during Monday’s meeting learned that upgrades to the campus infrastructure have shown on average $112,687 in energy savings over the past four years.

While there was plenty of good news to go around regarding energy savings, several trustees had questions about the lack of progress with the wind turbines, which were erected in early 2012 and have mostly stood still since.

Representatives from The CTS Group, contracted as the school’s life cycle infrastructure program manager, said they are pleased with most of the realized savings but couldn’t ignore the troubled turbines.

Trustee Robert Luther said the turbines have become an issue that needs to be resolved quickly. Board Chairman Mike Sullivan agreed, adding that the community has become impatient with the large pieces of equipment that have stood still for months because of mechanical and electrical issues.

Joe Tillman, renewable energy instructor and coordinator for the school, said while he understands the board’s frustrations, the turbines will work and help offset energy costs.

Ray Rieck, vice president for business services, said the important thing to keep in mind is the amount of training students have had with the turbines.

“As far as training and student learning goes in this state, this lab is second-to-none,” Tillman said.

Tillman noted that within the next 10 months, the complications with Bora, the turbine manufacturer, should be resolved.

Construction on the Northeast Building recently began. Over the past five years, the Field House, Vo-Tech Building, Northwest Building, Learning Resource Center and Webb Hall have been similarly renovated with planning help from The CTS Group. All of the Northeast Building’s mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems will be replaced with resource-efficient equipment, such as high-efficiency heating and air conditioning devices.

Work should be completed before the fall semester begins.

In other business, President Scott Lensink said the college has about 76 students who were affected by the state’s recent MAP grant dilemma. The state awarded about 10 percent more in grant funding than it could afford, due to incorrect predictions for the number of spring semester students.

Instead of asking Lake Land students for the $4,500 back, Lensink said the college made up the difference to repay the state.

Source:  By KAYLEIGH ZYSKOWSKI - H&R Staff Writer | herald-review.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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