MANATEE COUNTY JAIL GETS RETROFIT MAKEOVER

The Manatee County Commission approved an energy performance contract to retrofit the Manatee County jail with cost saving equipment and technology designed by Tampa based Ameresco Inc. for the amount of $7,468,020. The resolution, which also appropriated the funds to come from a Bank of America revenue note that is tied to the performance savings proposed by Ameresco, guaranteeing a savings that exceeds the cost of the service agreement, passed unanimously.

The Manatee County jail uses a lot of water and electricity, and much of its equipment dates back decades when high operational costs were the norm. The stockade was built in 1988 and the jail in 1993, but modern technology has come a long way in conserving the costly resources once considered a fixed expense.

Manatee County has long considered updating its lighting, air conditioners and chiller plant equipment at the jail, with hopes to lower operational cost. 

Ameresco presented an audit which identified recommended improvements with the highest potential of saving energy, known as Energy Conservation Measures (ECMs). The ECMs recommended by Ameresco to be designed, acquired, fabricated, and installed include:

1 – Outdoor Lighting Jail and Stockade, 2 – Domestic Water Conservation, 3 – Institutional Water Conservation Controls, 4 – Chiller Plant Retrofit and Modification, 5 – HVAC Controls and EMS, 6 – AC Replacement at Stockade, 7 – Power Transformers Replacement, 8 – Chiller Plant Emergency Power and 9 – Air Handling Units Replacement.

The terms of the Audit Agreement require that the County and Ameresco negotiate an Energy Performance Services Contracting Agreement to design, install, construct and implement the ECMs.

Water use at the jail and stockade is 53 million gallons annually, can be reduced to less than half, down to 25 million, according to the Ameresco. They will also switch to LED parking lighting and replace the 1,000-watt perimeter lights with a near equal lumens 375-watt bulbs.  

Timed showers with new nozzles, replacment of 33 air handlers with more efficient ones, new transformers and new efficient cold storage is proposed to save the county $9,741, 238 over 19 years, the same period of the BOA loan.

During the retrofit, some prisoners will be kept at a separate location.

The Bradenton Times