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News Release from Comptroller Susan Combs

For Immediate Release
September 16, 2009

Comptroller Helps Rosenberg Achieve Energy Savings

(AUSTIN) — The city of Rosenberg will soon start saving an estimated $560,060 annually in energy and water costs while improving the environment at the same time. The city will begin installing energy and water efficient equipment throughout its facilities using a $5 million loan from the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

Funding for this project comes from the LoanSTAR (Saving Taxes and Resources) Revolving Loan Program, administered by the State Energy Conservation Office, a division of the Comptroller’s office.

“The state wants to help Texas schools and local governments save valuable taxpayer dollars by using energy efficiently and reducing utility costs,” said Texas Comptroller Susan Combs. “The LoanSTAR Revolving Loan Program is an excellent way to help them obtain resources to realize those savings.”

A detailed utility assessment report recommended several energy-efficient projects city-wide, including city hall, fire and police stations, the wastewater treatment plant and the recreation center. Energy-efficient retrofit projects include heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) upgrades to replace older existing systems with new high performance, energy-efficient systems; energy management and control systems; high efficiency lighting improvements; converting existing traffic signals to light emitting diode (LED) fixtures; water conservation measures, such as high performance faucets, shower heads and toilets that will save more than 400,000 gallons of water per year; customer water meter replacements and automatic meter reading systems; and wastewater process efficiency improvements.

The Comptroller’s office estimates Rosenberg’s energy retrofits will pay for themselves from the projected annual energy savings of $560,060, paying off the LoanSTAR loan in just under nine years.

“This comes at no new cost to the city of Rosenberg,” Combs said. “After the loan is paid off, the city will continue to reap the benefits of saved energy costs by reallocating money for other needs as necessary.”

Projects funded through LoanSTAR have a significant environmental impact, reducing the release of pollutants from power plants as they burn less fuel to serve the public facilities, which become more energy efficient.

The LoanSTAR Revolving Loan Program is the largest state-run building energy conservation program in the United States and has saved public entities in Texas more than $200 million since 1990. Texas schools, cities and counties undergo a process of strict quality control and must meet rigorous guidelines to participate in the program. For more information on LoanSTAR, visit www.seco.cpa.state.tx.us/ls.htm.

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