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City officials apply for grant to improve Civic Center
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McMinnville officials are applying for a grant from the state to make improvements at the Civic Center.
The grant, a 50-50 grant through the Clean Tennessee Energy Program, could be used to improve lighting and possibly exterior doors.
The city Parks and Recreation Committee met Tuesday to consider applying for the grant. Members Aldermen Ben Newman, chair, Steve Harvey and Jimmy Bonner were presented the information by Water Department director Anthony Pelham.
“In short, the deadline is Jan. 29 if we want to apply,” said Pelham. “We are looking at replacing the main high bay interior lights above the basketball court and around the perimeter balcony. The potential savings to go LED is somewhere in the area of 300 to 400 a month just in kilowatt hour savings.”
Pelham also wants to include upgrades to the facility’s exterior doors.
“We are also looking at some energy savings of upgrading the double and single doors around the perimeter,” said Pelham. “There are nine doubles and two singles. The doors need to be done so we’re hoping we can get some grant money for that. There are 11 doors and 88 lights total.”
The estimated cost of the upgrades is $70,000, with $50,000 of that for the doors only. If a 50-50 grant can be obtained, the city’s cost would be reduced to $35,000.
In 2011, Tennessee and other states were part of a federal court settlement of an enforcement action under the federal Clean Air Act that resulted in a consent decree with Tennessee Valley Authority. A part of the consent decree obligates TVA to provide Tennessee with $26.4 million to fund environmental mitigation projects
The city could apply for up to $250,000.
Newman asked about the possibility of including other upgrades.
“The grant can be used in other areas but this is time sensitive,” said Pelham. “We didn’t learn about it until late. The deadline to apply is Jan. 29. I did have someone suggest to me the Rescue Squad building and I was unaware, initially, the city was the owner of that facility so I haven’t done any evaluation of it. We can take a look at it and see if we can roll any of it into the scope.”
Currently, the city is making improvements to the building. Those improvements are being made in-house, meaning city employees are making the improvements.
Committee members unanimously approved applying for the grant, with a recommendation that Pelham review the Warren County Rescue Squad building to see if any aspects of that renovation meet grant criteria.
The measure will be sent to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen for its consideration Jan. 26.