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Historic Courthouse to receive LEED plaque
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The Effingham County Board of Commissioners will be holding a LEED Plaque Presentation Ceremony on Monday.  The ceremony will begin at 1:30 p.m. in the courtroom of the newly rehabilitated Historic Effingham County Courthouse.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is an internationally recognized green building certification system, providing third party verification that a building was built with strategies intended to improve performance in areas that include but are not limited to energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality and stewardship of resources sensitive to their impacts.

The Effingham County Board of Commissioners and the Courthouse Committee set the goal of sustainability and LEED certification in the early stages of the project, and will reap the benefits of lower operations costs and environmental quality for years to come. 

Expected returns from LEED implementation include 30 percent reductions in water usage, and 34 percent reduction in energy consumption, with an estimated annual savings of $14,000.

LEED promotes sustainable building and development practices though a suite of rating systems that recognize projects that implement strategies for better environmental and health performance.  There are four levels of accomplishment for projects, LEED Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.  While the County and design build team signed on for the basic certified level, through diligence and smart planning the County will be receiving LEED Gold for their efforts.

Members of the Effingham County commissioners will be on hand to accept the plaque, which will be presented by Denise Grabowski, chair of the Georgia Chapter of the USGBC.  The special guest speaker will be Mark McDonald, President and CEO of The Georgia Trust.  State Reps. Jon Burns and Ann Purcell and state Sen. Jack Hill also will be in attendance at the ceremony.

The rehabilitation of the historic Courthouse project was completed in November 2010.  The project was paid for by the special purpose local option sales tax.  The design build team consisted of J.T. Turner Construction, Hussey, Gay, Bell and DeYoung – Architects and Engineers and Greenline Architecture.