Decatur County Commissioners hear of money-saving options

Published 9:27 am Monday, June 14, 2021

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This past Tuesday, the Decatur County Commissioners held their regularly scheduled meeting. One of the items on the agenda was a presentation by Brian Hutchinson, account executive for Johnson Controls.

Johnson Controls is a company that produces and installs HVAC, lighting and water systems, among others. They offer optimization and retrofitting of these systems for old and historic buildings, described by Hutchinson as “holistic infrastructure upgrades centered around energy efficiency, stability and community growth.”

The Commissioners took the Johnson Controls offer under advisement. If accepted, Johnson Controls would provide a free analysis of Decatur County’s historic building’s systems, and provide a proposed amount of money the county could save, should they make these more efficient infrastructure retrofits. If the county opts to accept, Johnson Controls will act as the “architect” of the contract, and either work with local contractors to make the retrofits, or offer the services of their own contractors and engineers. According to Hutchinson, the deal is insured by Johnson Controls; that is to say, if the company engineers predict $100,000 in annual savings, and the county only saves $80,000, Johnson Controls will pay the remaining $20,000.

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“There’s options we have, the county can make the savings and keep them,” Hutchinson told the Post Searchlight, “or they can make them and see what else we can do,” alluding to further potential upgrades and infrastructure developments.

The next County Commissioner meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, June 22 at 7:00 p.m., where the offer may be discussed further. The commissioner’s office can be reached at (229) 248-3030.