March 15, 2001

City Gets Signing Ceremony Invitations Out Before Approval

RSVP invitations were mailed this week asking some citizens to attend a signing ceremony on Friday, March 23 for the City to become a U.S.
Department of Energy Communities of the Future.

The City Commission will hold its first open meeting on the subject on Tuesday, March 20. Do you think this is a done deal?

Manhattan joined another program from the U.S. Department of Energy called "Clean Cities" three years ago.

The City paid more that $200,000 for a compressed natural gas storage tank and now we are paying $3,000 to $7,000 more per vehicle to have
dual fuel systems.

Last month the City agreed to pay $400,000 for 14 vehicles but after the order was put on hold they were canceled. Now the City will purchase
14 regular vehicles.

Communities of the Future is a pilot project by the Energy Department to test "new, more effective approaches to help communities gain the
economic and environmental advantages of DOE's existing programs, as well as energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.
Benefits to communities include lower energy operating costs for local governments and private citizens."

A brochure says: "Identify the community's top economic, environmental and quality of life goals. With DOE's assistance, develop and
provide a plan of how energy efficiency and renewable energy can help reach these goals. The community will then tell DOE what it needs
and wants, rather than DOE attempting to dictate what its help to the community might be."

It also state: "Designate or hire a full-time energy coordinator to champion energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies within the