Item No: 3.D.2.
Meeting Date: April 9, 2012
From: Doug Drymon, Deputy City Manager
Subject: Resolution appropriating funds for the Leesburg High School Construction and Energy Technology Program
Staff recommends appropriation of $220,000.00 from the Leesburg Electric enterprise fund to assist with the acquisition of supplies, equipment, educational software, and other activities necessary to outfit an Energy Lab at Leesburg High School in advance of the 2012-2013 school year.
In 2010, city staff approached the administration at Leesburg High School with the idea of developing an “energy academy”. The academy would be designed to teach LHS students everything from the fundamentals of electricity to more advanced concepts such as smart grid technology, alternative energy, and energy conservation. The benefits would be two-fold. First, the students would benefit from exposure to a potentially lucrative and enjoyable career field for which there is strong demand for skilled workers. Industry certification in four distinct areas would be possible for students in the program, increasing their employment potential. The second benefit would be the development of a skilled workforce in the Leesburg area to aid the City in attracting energy technology related companies. This is the first step in the workforce development component of the Leesburg Energy and Aerospace Program (LEAP).
The new program will be part of the Lake County School Board’s “Careers Through Education” (CTE) Program, and will be an expansion of the existing Construction Technology Program housed at Leesburg High School. The curriculum for the renamed “Construction and Energy Technology Academy” has been prepared by the program Instructor, Dan Keeling, using curriculum from other successful programs at West Florida High School of Advanced Technology in Pensacola and Tenoroc High School in Lakeland. As compared to these programs, the four-year Energy Technician Program at Leesburg High will include an expanded focus on alternative energy and Smart Grid technology using Leesburg Electric to draw on for information, internships and support. Leesburg Electric has already identified an on-campus location adjacent to the lab where a “pole yard” will be erected to give students an opportunity to learn some of the basics of being an electric lineman. In related discussions, the Executive Director of Lake Technical Center, Dr. Diane Culpepper, has expressed an interest in partnering with Leesburg High School and the City of Leesburg to possibly offer a certified adult education program in Smart Grid Technology training, using some of the specialized equipment in the lab.
Attached is a proposed budget for the energy lab expenditures. Vendors for the equipment include Marcraft, Amatrol, LJ Create, Industrial Training University, and Progressive Education Systems. Several sample specification sheets are attached for your perusal.
1. Approve the recommended appropriation.
2. Such alternative action as the Commission may deem appropriate
Fiscal Impact: $220.000. The source of funds will be the Phase I Demand Response savings account, which has an unencumbered balance of $2,417,250. Aside from the initial outfitting of the Lab, staff anticipates that some minor amount of on-going financial support will be required from the City to help pay for consumable supplies and equipment replacement, and possibly instructor training. Instructional support for the Construction and Energy Technology Academy will be undertaken by the Lake County School system, although ancillary support in the form of internships and job-shadowing may be requested from Leesburg Electric as the program develops. Subject to future approval of the City Commission, the City could eventually be asked to provide further financial assistance to allow the hiring of an additional instructor, if this becomes necessary as a result of the program’s success.
Prepared by: ______________________
Attachments: Yes____ No ______
Advertised: ____Not Required ______
Attorney Review : Yes___ No ____
Reviewed by: Dept. Head ________
Finance Dept. __________________
Deputy C.M. ___________________
City Manager ___________________
Account No. 041-1021-531-8210__
Project No. _LHSLAB_________
WF No. ______________________
RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF LEESBURG, FLORIDA, APPROPRIATING FUNDS FOR THE LEESBURG HIGH SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION AND ENERGY TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM ; AND PROVIDING AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF LEESBURG, FLORIDA:
THAT the Mayor and City Commission hereby approve the appropriation of funds from the Leesburg Electric Department budget in an amount not to exceed $220,000.00 to assist with the acquisition of supplies, equipment, improvements, and educational software, as well as to perform such other tasks as may be required to outfit an Energy Lab at Leesburg High School in advance of the 2012-2013 school year.
THAT this resolution shall become effective immediately.
PASSED AND ADOPTED by the City Commission of the City of Leesburg, Florida, at a regular meeting held the __9th___ day of ___April______ 2012.