KENNEWICK, Wash. - The City of Kennewick's efforts to conserve energy are paying off in a big way.
Tuesday, Benton PUD presented a check for almost $800,000 to the city for all of their hard work. The cash comes from a Benton PUD rebate program, and recognizes the changes the city made to conserve energy in 2012.
The City of Kennewick and Benton PUD replaced all of the street lights and lights in the city owned buildings to make them last longer, and use less energy.
The new lighting uses only 50% of the energy, and also provides better quality lighting. The changes will save the city about $200,000 in energy costs each year.
"We'll actually use this money to cover costs in the general fund. We have a lot of services that we're constantly trying to cut corners on. This will just help us with police, and fire and road repair and all those services," said Kennewick Mayor Steve Young.
It took about 2 and a half years to convert all of the lights, which included more than 5,500 street lights and 21 city owned buildings. The rebate program is partially funded by the Bonneville Power Administration.