Tewksbury's Green Community Grant Larger Than Expected
Town will get more than $200,000 to improve energy efficiency.
It took the Green Committee years of planning, research and community education to help Tewksbury achieve Green Community status. Now comes the payoff.
Tewksbury officials received word recently that the town will be receiving a $207,725 grant -- the full amount they had requested in its grant application but around $37,000 more than they had been led to believe would be awarded.
"It appears we got everything we submitted for," said Selectwoman Ann-Marie Stronach, chairwoman of the Green Committee. "We were aware they were very pleased with our proposal. The reason they were so impressed is that we tied in (the grant-funded projects) with our Capital Improvement Plan (CIP)."
Stronach said Town Manager Richard Montuori played a key role in weaving the Green Committee's efforts into the CIP.
Tewksbury's grant will be used to fund energy conservation measures in multiple municipal buildings including the police station, library, Center and South fire stations, and the Wynn, Ryan, Heath Brook and Trahan schools. Energy efficient lighting will also be added at the Dewing School.
These improvements are part of an overall plan to reduce Tewksbury's municipal energy usage by 20 percent.
Stronach gave special credit to Green Committee member Tom Cook for spearheading the effort to gather the "baseline" energy use info needed to put together the plan and the grant application. But she also stressed that it was an overall team effort.
"I am very pleased I’m very grateful for eveyone’s hard work," said Stronach. "It’s a great committee, a really hard working committee ... everyone on there."
The Green Community grants are funded through the state’s Department of Energy Resources. In this latest round of grants, 21 Massachusetts cities and towns shared in $3.7 million.
“I applaud all of our Green Communities for their efforts to reduce costs, increase energy efficiency and create jobs in the clean energy economy,” said Governor Deval Patrick. "These Green Communities are truly a model for the nation, and a big part of why Massachusetts has moved up to number one in energy efficiency."