CALDWELL, ID - Commissioners recently accepted $238,100 in grant money from the Department of Energy for several projects in Canyon County.

Funds have been awarded to purchase a nitrogen generator, which will be used to fill the tires of the vehicles in the county fleet, providing them with longer life, and better gas mileage. The grant money will also help fund the county fleet's purchase of two hybrid vehicles.

The bulk of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant funding will be utilized at Celebration Park, as the park converts to solar energy, with a goal of going completely off the power grid, and running solely on solar power. As Celebration Park is heavily utilized by school groups, the county is optimistic that the solar powered buildings will be a learning tool for the groups.

In addition, the county will use the money to convert lighting systems at the fairgrounds, county shop, and landfill to energy-efficient lighting, saving the county thousands each year in utility costs. The county will also utilize Idaho Power financial assistance in making the retrofits.