CBS Atlanta News has uncovered a major waste that could save the district millions. We are asking the Tough Questions about why lights are being left on at all hours of the day and night at schools that are supposed to be closed for the summer.
“You can count every book in the library because the lights are on so bright,” said parent Cheryl Miller.
CBS Atlanta News found lights left on in hallways, cafeterias and classrooms night after night at schools around the district.
“If they are not being careful and watching how money is being spent on something so obvious, how else are they wasting money?” Miller asked.
Miller and her husband Paul contacted CBS Atlanta when they saw lights left on at Brockett Elementary.
“Seventy percent of our taxes go to the school board and they are squandering it,” Paul Miler said.
“The only thing I can think is maybe someone is in there cleaning. But cleaning up from what? School is out,” board member Paul Womack said.
Chief Investigative Reporter Wendy Saltzman took video of five schools with lights on to district staff and board members for a response.
“Our electricity expenses are terribly over budget, so this is an area where we do need to exert control,” says board member Nancy Jester.
Jester first brought the problem about electricity waste to the school boards attention last year.
“We are $1 million over budget on our electricity,” she said at an October 2011 board meeting.
Now, nine months later the district is $6 million over budget in electricity alone.
“There’s waste, and I know there’s waste,” Jester said.
“It’s all over the place, and it is not acceptable and we are going to make sure it gets fixed,” school spokesperson Jeff Dickerson told Saltzman.
Dickerson said as a result of our investigation, the district is in the process of checking school timers and alerting school staff.
“These are not just security lights, these are people forgetting to turn the lights off,” he said.
Click here to read the full article and view the report:
School lights left on, Tough Questions about waste
Thank you Wendy Saltzman!
ps- Curious – Is Jeff Dickerson our spokesperson again? Did he ever really leave? Where’s Walter?