City of Yreka Public Works Success Story

CA_City_Yreka_13.26.53_325x222.jpgIncentives from Pacific Power helped the City of Yreka upgrade lighting at City Hall and its Service Center. Pacific Power regional business manager Todd Andres (left) visited Matthew Bray, the city’s maintenance manager.

To be responsible stewards of public funds, local governments look to cut costs while maintaining important programs and services which residents and businesses rely on every day. Improving energy efficiency in municipal buildings can help governments reduce operating costs, taking pressure off budgets.

In northern California, the City of Yreka recently used Pacific Power’s wattsmart® Business program to upgrade to high-efficiency lighting in City Hall and its Service Center facility. Wattsmart Business provides cash incentives and technical assistance to commercial, industrial and government customers when they install energy-saving lighting, heating, cooling and other equipment.

“The availability of this program was key to our decision to move ahead,” said Matthew Bray, City of Yreka maintenance manager.

Better lighting, less maintenance

Yreka’s Public Works staff attended a Pacific Power energy efficiency workshop and learned about energy-saving incentives and technical assistance available through the utility. The staff reported back on ways to save both energy and money at city facilities, and City Manager Steven Baker wanted to take advantage of the opportunities, according to Bray.

The 8,500-square-foot City Hall facility houses Yreka’s Administration, Building, Finance Department, Human Resources, Planning and Public Works Administration departments. The 8,000-square-foot Service Center is home to the city’s Fleet, Water, Wastewater, and Maintenance Divisions. The building has offices, shop spaces, as well as inventory and storage bays.

With the help from the wattsmart Business program Yreka maintenance crews upgraded old T12 fluorescent lighting and magnetic ballasts to qualified high-efficiency T8 fluorescent lighting with electronic ballasts throughout both buildings.

“Office staff noticed immediately that a hum was no longer present from the aging fluorescent lighting in City Hall,” said Bray.

Based on the work involved, the city decided to replace fixtures at the Service Center rather than retro-fitting the existing equipment, according to Bray. Along with the new fluorescent lighting, extremely efficient LED lighting was installed inside and outside the building to replace fixtures that used a range of older technologies, including incandescent, metal vapor and metal halide.

“Maintenance costs have been dramatically reduced in all installations,” Bray said.

‘Direct savings of taxpayer dollars’

City of Yreka’s lighting improvements at City Hall and in the Service Center are saving a total of 30,675 kilowatt-hours in electricity and nearly $4,000 in energy costs annually. In addition, the city received more than $5,960 in incentives from Pacific Power’s wattsmart Business program to offset project costs.

“The most valuable aspect of the program is a direct savings of taxpayer dollars,” Bray said. “Not only have we seen gains in energy efficiency, we have increased the availability of our crews to work on other projects.”

Find out if Pacific Power wattsmart Business energy efficiency incentives and services are right for your business. Learn more »