LIVERMORE FALLS — Improving energy efficiency is a top priority this summer in Regional School Unit 73.

Ken Vining, the district’s supervisor of facilities and transportation, told the RSU 73 board of directors Thursday that  new lighting and windows will be installed at some buildings, and new propane boilers are planned for Spruce Mountain Elementary School and Spruce Mountain High School in Jay.

Board member Doug DiPasquale noted the entire project will not be completed until fall, “but the major construction work will take place this summer.”

He added that Siemens, the firm overseeing the project, would ensure any work done once school resumes will happen when students are not in class.

Vining also told the board another water leak had been discovered at Spruce Mountain Elementary School, the third this year. He said the sewer department had informed the school district the school was using an unusually large amount of water, leading to the leak’s discovery.

Earlier this year, a water leak at Spruce Mountain Middle School in Jay caused $53,735 in damage to classrooms. Vining said RSU 73 would be able to recover about $40,000 of the cost through its insurance coverage.

Vining said he was pleased with the results of the Maine State Police bus inspections, conducted May 8 and 16. Only four buses were taken out of service, and only for minor defects.

“They’re very fussy,” he said.

Vining added that the inspections are more stringent now after a series of highly publicized bus accidents in other Maine school systems over the past year.

In other matters, Spruce Mountain High School student board representative Scott Jackson reported he was part of a team that participated May 18 in the Kleinschmidt Windstorm Challenge at the University of Maine. The team had to design and construct a floating platform for a wind turbine.

“Out of the 25 teams from all across the state, we won first place,” he said.

Members of the top-qualifying team will be offered an internship at the University of Maine Advanced Structures and Composites Center if they enroll at UMaine.

[email protected]

RSU 73 Superintendent’s Office. (File photo)