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New London - The city is looking to hire a licensed boiler technician to oversee the beleaguered heating systems at Bennie Dover Jackson Middle School and New London High School.
The Public Works Committee on Monday approved a yearlong contract for $58,500 with EMCOR Services New England Mechanical of New London to monitor the systems. The full council is expected to act on the contract at its Jan. 21 meeting.
New England Mechanical, the lowest of two bidders for the job, would provide a part-time licensed HVAC boiler technician who would be responsible for the daily care of the heating systems in the two buildings. The contract includes 24-hour emergency services.
The boilers at both the middle and high schools have had ongoing problems for years, including a day or two last winter when there was no heat in the middle school. In 2010, two new boilers were installed at Bennie Dover at a cost of about $390,000 but the most of the old plumbing was not replaced.
Last January, the Capitol Region Education Council warned the city that its failure to maintain the boilers at the middle school could have created a serious fire hazard and recommended the entire heating system be fixed or replaced.
The heating system at the high school is "on the verge of system failure" Superintendent Nicholas A. Fischer said earlier this year. For 20 years, he said, the system has been neglected.
At the high school, the new technician will check water levels in the boilers and treat the water daily. At the middle school, the technician will inspect the boilers daily and address any issues that arise.
The agreement includes a licensed HVAC technician working 2.5 hours a day, five days a week for 12 months. The city will be billed $4,875 a month.