State Representative Bob McDermott Salutes the Students of Campbell for their Efforts
News Release from Office of Rep Bob McDermott Sept 26, 2013
The students from Campbell High School came in force today to the State Capitol to demand air conditioning for their oven-like classrooms.
McDermott said, "The Principal Naomi Takamori and the students showed up in force. The young men and women were fantastically well behaved and were a credit to their school. I want to thank the ubiquitous Mr. Corey Rosenlee for his hard work and committed leadership on this issue.
Upon taking office, I knew that getting AC at Campbell was going to be my top priority for the District. As the father of a 10th grader enrolled there, I have more than a professional interest. That said, I soon discovered that the economic downturn that happened a few years ago suspended the work of electrical upgrades needed to handle any school wide AC capacity. This past legislative session, working with Rep. Cabanilla and Senator Espero, we were able to secure one million dollars toward more electrical work – that is the good news. The bad news is that we still need about another 1.5 million on top of that to finish the job. Then we can actively engage in the quest for Air-conditioning equipment to improve the learning environment.
To this end, I have asked the DOE as part of their photovoltaic initiatives, if we could combine the AC with the photovoltaic and simply increase the payout due the contractor over a period of years. This would require no upfront cost to the tax payer and be paid for by money currently being used for fossil fuel power generation. A win-win solution I think.
However, the DOE has told me it is not that easy (please see attached files). However, I shall not give up. I am going to press the DOE to make a change order to the contract as it relates to Campbell as I assume each school is a particular job and individual project in the master agreement. It is estimated that the AC for Campbell will cost us another 1.5 million on top of the upgrades to the electrical system. We shall get there, we will see this through. It is just like eating an elephant, how do you do it? One bite at a time."
Campbell HS AC Letters: 09-04-2013, 09-20-2013
PHOTOS: Campbell HS Needs AC
KHON: The heat is on to cool public schools
SA: Students turn on heat for air conditioning
KITV: Students, teachers rally in the fight for air conditioners in classrooms
CB: Sick of Sweltering, Students Demand Relief from Hawaii Legislature
HSTA: Students rally at the Hawaii State Capitol for cooler classrooms