Sen. Marchi, Councilman Oddo Provide Grants for Energy Improvements at Wagner H.S.

Joseph Leary, 914-390-8187
Connie Cullen, 914-390-8196

March 11, 2005


STATEN ISLAND—New York State Senator John J. Marchi and New York City Council Member James Oddo today Friday made grants totaling $350,000 for the auditorium renovation here at Susan E. Wagner High School (SWHS).  They were joined by Eugene W. Zeltmann, president and chief executive officer, New York Power Authority (NYPA), as NYPA will administer the funds to install the auditorium’s new energy-efficient lighting systems.

“Susan E. Wagner High School has educated thousands of Staten Island youngsters in exemplary fashion for more than 39 years.  It is in the process of modernizing its physical plant and renovations proposed in its lighting would greatly enhance the facility,” said Senator Marchi.  “I know the Power Authority, under Chairman Louis Ciminelli, will follow through very professionally and get the job moving.”

“I am happy that I was able to secure $250,000 in funding for the new state-of-the-art auditorium lighting at Susan Wagner High School,” said Council Member Oddo.  “This lighting will improve the educational experience and contribute to brighter futures for the kids in Susan Wagner.  This is an example of a successful partnership between the City and State governments that will benefit students on Staten Island.  Thank you to Governor Pataki, Senator Marchi, and NYPA for helping to make this a reality.”

“This funding will enhance the auditorium at Susan E. Wagner High School with new theatrical lighting for the students.  It will benefit them during school productions and other learning experiences.  I applaud Governor Pataki, Senator Marchi, Councilman Oddo and NYPA for their commitment to this worthwhile project,” said Congressman Vito Fossella (R-NY13).    

“These improvements bring together high tech energy-saving features and state-of-the-art theatrical production equipment to create a showcase facility our entire community will be proud of,” said New York State Assemblyman Matthew Mirones.

“From Todt Hill to Tottenville, New Dorp to New Lane and, now, Stapleton to Susan E. Wagner High School, the Power Authority has invested, under Governor Pataki’s drive to cut energy use, almost $19 million in energy efficiency at over 60 public facilities on Staten Island including schools, police stations and hospitals saving taxpayers nearly $2 million annually and reducing emissions by over 15,000 tons per year,” said NYPA’s President and CEO Zeltmann.  

“We are grateful to Governor Pataki, Congressman Fossella, Senator Marchi, Councilman Oddo and the Power Authority for this new lighting and its important lessons in energy conservation which allows us to save much-needed funds for instructional programs,” said Gary M. Giordano, principal, Susan E. Wagner High School.

These grants will fund installation of new lighting for both the auditorium and include new theatrical lighting for its stage area.  All wiring, light fixtures, dimmers and the control console will be replaced.  The new system is state-of-the-art technology, simple to operate, meets all current safety codes and allows for much more flexible operation.  It will provide all students with improved visibility inside the auditorium and for those students, involved in stage production, hands-on experience useful in the real world.  

The new system is designed so it can be enlarged and updated technically, as needed, making it continually viable learning tool for students.  Administrators at SWHS conducted an energy audit of the auditorium and stage lighting which was confirmed through NYPA inspection.  It was determined that the present equipment is outdated and in poor condition with replacement parts and service difficult to find and very expensive. 

Other renovations to the auditorium including the installation of new stage curtains are also planned during this period.

Council Member Oddo’s $250,000 grant from New York City is complemented by a $100,000 Petroleum Overcharge Restitution Fund (POCR) grant arranged by Senator Marchi.  POCR is a fund established to provide restitution to consumers for overcharges by major petroleum companies in the past.  In New York State the fund is administered by the New York Power Authority.  NYPA is a national leader in advancing energy efficiency and developing clean energy technologies and electric vehicles.