The Bemidji City Council awarded a contract last night to Honeywell Corporation to perform an energy audit of city facilities. The $56,000 contract will generate a list of recommendations that Honeywell says will result in savings of between $230,000 and $270,000 per year once implemented. These savings are expected to pay for the millions of dollars that the improvements are expected to cost over the next decade.
City councilors, who were initially concerned by the high cost and long-term nature of the contract, were reassured by Honeywell's guarantees that the savings would be real and that the audit itself did not commit the city to perform the uprades. Honeywell will pay future bond payments for the projects if the savings fail to meet their predictions.
The Council also heard an update on the Save the Carnegie campaign last evening. Lew Crenshaw, chairman of the independent Save the Carnegie Committee said the group has raised more that $640,000 so far and is seeking more grants to restore the historic building and move it back from Paul Bunyan Drive.