DOYLESTOWN, Pa. (CBS) – Bucks County officials are taking a second look at an energy program that could save taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars after several complaints from county workers at the courthouse in Doylestown.

County officials say the power curtailment program could save taxpayers as much as a quarter of a million dollars by shutting down the air conditioning in the late afternoon hours to cut peak load capacity.

But as the mercury climbs this week to near triple digits, the program has drawn complaints from some workers who want the county to reconsider.

“We don’t feel as though we’re being ridiculous in our request to ask the employees to share — basically a shared sacrifice — and we never, ever will look to put our employees’ health in any kind of danger,” says county COO Brian Hessenthaler.

So far this summer, the county has shut down the air conditioning in the courthouse and the prison between 3 PM and 6 PM on six days, including this past Monday and Tuesday.

Hessenthaler says they monitor the temperatures in the buildings, and if it gets too hot they’ll turn the system back on.

The county is not shutting the air down today, when temperatures are expected to top 100°.  A decision about tomorrow will come later this afternoon.

Reported by Brad Segall, KYW Newsradio 1060



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