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Matching Grant Program for Energy Efficiency in Local Governments in the Border Region

With funding from the EPA, the TCEQ has contracted with the LBJ School of Public Affairs at UT Austin to manage a one-time matching grants program for local governments who are implementing retrofits for energy efficiency.

Project Description: In 2012 the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality proposed to EPA, and was awarded a grant for, a one-time matching grant program focused on energy efficiency in local governments in the border region of Texas.

The TCEQ is implementing this program through a contract with the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.

UT Austin issued an RFP in October 2012. Five categories of “political subdivisions”—cities, counties, school districts, community college districts, and irrigation districts—were eligible, and the geographical area extended from Brownsville to El Paso. The RFP required at least a one-to-one match from each applicant. Twenty-one entities submitted applications. An independent committee of efficiency experts reviewed the applications and submitted recommendations to fund six projects. UT accepted these recommendations as the basis for making awards.

The six projects, all of which will be completed by July 2013, are as follows:

Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD
The district is installing an automated logic system of direct digital controls for the PSJA ISD College Career & Technology Academy (CCTA) Building.

City of Primera
The city is replacing two old air conditioning systems at the Primera Community Center.

Weslaco ISD
The district is replacing old HVAC equipment at the Horton Alternative Education Campus.

Brownsville ISD
The district is upgrading old lighting fixtures at Gonzalez Elementary School with new, more efficient bulbs.
[Note: As of 5/15, this project had been approved by the ISD board but is pending final signatures.]

Sullivan City
The city will replace current exterior lighting at City Hall complex and Memorial Park with LEDs.

Hudspeth County Irrigation District 1
The district is replacing three diesel engines currently powering “dewatering” wells with electric motors. The wells are used for water supplies during drought.