$6.5M to go toward HVAC improvements at Vermont schools

Published: Jul. 8, 2020 at 5:21 PM EDT
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Help is on the way to clean up the air in Vermont schools to address COVID-19 concerns.

Efficiency Vermont Wednesday announced it's launching the School Indoor Air Quality Grant Program. It will use $6.5 million the Legislature set aside of federal CARES Act money to help schools around the state improve their HVAC systems so that students and staff will be safer when they return in the fall.

Evidence suggests better air filtration can slow the virus' spread and the projects that are eligible follow CDC guidelines.

"We want to focus on what's going to have the highest amount of impact in the shortest amount of time, so schools are going to look at increased filtration, increased outside air in their ventilation system, and also can do some work on controlling humidity," said Efficiency Vermont's Jody Lesko.

They say schools with the greatest need will have priority but thinks there will be enough money to go around, given that the projects have to be completed before the end of the year.