How much money does it cost to change light bulbs? A SLO County contract to change out street lighting at various areas in the county might be an indication.
Called the “Intersection LED Streetlights Project” County Supervisors awarded a $243,000 contract to Lee Wilson Electric Co., of Arroyo Grande. The project will change out streetlights at a total of five intersections in Templeton, Los Osos, Arroyo Grande and Pismo Beach, according to a staff report from Project Manager Aaron Yonker.
Wilson Electric was actually the only bidder for the job, yet its bid was 14.5% lower than the engineering department’s estimate of $284,000. The County added in a $25,000 contingency to the overall budget bringing it up to $268,000.
Money for the project is coming out of a Federal Highway Safety Improvement Program grant. Caltrans will manage the project and act as the State contribution needed to receive the federal monies, which derive from fuel taxes paid at the pump.
Los Osos will see two of the replacements, at the intersections of South Bay Boulevard and Los Olivos Avenue and at SBB and Pismo Avenue.
The project in Arroyo Grande will be at Printz and Noyes Roads; in Pismo Beach at Ormonde and Price Canyon Roads; and in Templeton at Bethel Road and Vineyard Drive.
While the overall project was deemed to have no environmental impacts under the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) as analyzed by Caltrans, it’s not that easy in Los Osos.
“A qualified biologist will conduct presence/absence surveys for Morro Shoulderband Snail prior to work in the Los Osos construction area,” Yonker said. “Also, nesting bird surveys will be conducted prior to construction for any work between February 1, 2022 and September 1, 2022.”
This contract is part of a greater effort to change light bulbs to the more energy efficient type. Yonker said it’s a multi-year project that Supervisors originally budgeted at $705,000.