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Long IslandTowns

Islip buying energy efficient street lights

Islip Town Tuesday approved spending $355,220 it received from a federal Department of Energy grant to an existing agreement with Welsbach Electric of Long Island to buy and install energy efficient street lights.

The town calculates it will be able to save between 45 percent and 60 percent on energy consumption — and in turn, energy costs — per street light by converting from high pressure sodium bulbs to lower wattage induction technology, said Councilman John Edwards.

The federal money will be used to switch about 8,000 of the town’s roughly 25,000 street lights. The town has already committed $2.8 million in federal funds for the measure and, by the end of last month, had replaced 3,172 lights, Edwards said.

The town plans to upgrade the rest of the lights through a separate New York Power Authority low-interest loan program. It won’t have to repay the loan until the project is completed and savings are realized, Edwards said.

Separately, the town board approved a sub-grant of $250,000 to its Community Development Agency to fund a home energy survey program. The money will enable home visits to inform residents of specific measures they can take to save on energy costs.

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