The New Albany-Plain Local School District plans to hire a consultant to help improve the district's energy efficiency.

The New Albany-Plain Local School District plans to hire a consultant to help improve the district's energy efficiency.

"We would like to hire a consultant to do an initial evaluation of the campus and help us with various energy-related systems," said Ken Stark, the district's director of operations.

Stark said the district is seeking consultants who would study energy uses, such as lights and heating and cooling systems in buildings.

The district already has identified some improvements that could save money in energy costs. Stark said the consultant could help identify more cost savings.

The state offers bonds to schools for energy improvements through Ohio House Bill 264, passed in 1985.

"What House Bill 264 lets you do is fund the project using the savings to pay for it," Stark said. "You issue notes, do the work and use the savings generated by the energy improvements to pay off the notes."

Stark said the district completed a similar project during the 2004-05 school year.

Energy improvement projects must be approved by the Ohio School Facilities Commission, which reviews projects related to H.B. 264.

Another project that could save the district money is outsourcing management of the high school pool.

Stark said the person who managed the pool for the district left in March. The district is considering partnering with Plain Township on a contract for pool management. The school district's pool is used from October to April and the Plain Township Aquatic Center is used from May to September.

"We've talked about combining management services and splitting the cost, keeping the people here year-round," Stark said.

Plain Township administrator Ben Collins said the township contracts with Hastings Pool Management of Columbus for pool management. The school district contracts with Hastings for pool maintenance.

Stark said it is too late to work with the township on a contract to finish out this school year but they are talking about a contract for 2012-13.