Mike Gibson, chairman of the Tippecanoe County Commission, welcomed the new public/private partnership in supporting economic development to the region as well as the opportunity to serve public education throughout the state.
"The news that Performance Services is coming to our community is positive, exciting and forward thinking. Announcement of a new business and new jobs is headline making," said Mike Gibson.
"Rolled into that good news are the financial and educational opportunities available to public school systems and higher education institutions when they invest in wind energy. Greater Lafayette Commerce is rolling out the welcome mat as we eagerly await production of wind energy in our county," he said.
"Wind power holds great promise for our country. And Performance Services holds great promise for our county and for area public schools, colleges and universities," said John Knochel, president of the Tippecanoe County Commission.
"Charged with finding innovative, creative ways to hold the line on expenses and fund education, schools and universities stand to gain some great benefits when they invest in this wind turbines park. The Tippecanoe County Commission is proud of its work to pave the way for our first wind energy park, and we’re pleased that the choice to proceed with plans to locate here was made by an Indiana-based company," Knochel said. "This is a 21st century advancement, a step toward sustainability and indeed a day to remember."
Ralph Shrader, superintendent of M.S.D. of Warren County, also spoke at the news event. The school corporation is actively pursuing school board approval and funding to participate in the wind farm project.
Shrader said, "We are thrilled about the possibility of working with Performance Services and hope that we can be part of Performance Park. Throughout the years, Performance Services has built a solid reputation of operating with the best interest of schools in mind. Green energy is the future and I applaud Performance Services for their vision and dedication in pursuit of this project."
In announcing the company’s intent to construct the wind farm, Tim Thoman, president of Performance Services, said, "We are excited about working with the Greater Lafayette Commerce, local land owners, and schools and universities to move this important project to reality. We have commenced our detailed wind and environmental studies and look forward to those findings in the next several months. At this time, several Indiana public school corporations have expressed interest in this project. The net revenue potential is significant with $175 million dollars generated, in total, to help fund the budgets of participating schools and universities over the next 25 years. Performance Park will also provide a renewable energy learning experience for students with an integrated curriculum and enable school corporations to model environmental stewardship and sustainable practices to their communities."
A.J. Booher, of A.J. and Amy Booher Farm, said, "Without question, wind energy is important. We cannot rely on fossil fuels forever. My wife Amy and I hope to be part of the solution by producing wind energy along with corn and soybeans on our land. I think taking that step forward is one of the best gifts we can give our three children, ages 2, 5 and 7. They are counting on us to solve our nation’s energy crisis. Producing wind energy is like adding a new crop, but with a lot less effort and a guaranteed yield. Because Performance Services will be bringing in public schools and universities as investors, these institutions stand to benefit. With the number crunching going on in today’s education budgets, I expect schools will find this venture a wise way to generate revenue. It’s also an educational opportunity for schools, a way to teach children who don’t live on farms with turbines about wind energy."
With anticipated positive study results, Performance Park Wind Farm is expected to be operational by December of 2012.
About Greater Lafayette Commerce. Headquartered at 337 Columbia St. in Lafayette, Greater Lafayette Commerce (www.greaterlafayettecommerce.com), whose roots go back more than 80 years, is a nonprofit membership organization supported by local businesses, industries and governments. Its mission is to advance economic and community prosperity for a superior quality of life.
An Indiana design-build company, Performance Services has more than 12 years of success and experience implementing design-build and guaranteed energy saving contracts. Markets served include education, municipal and healthcare. Innovative wind power and geothermal systems are integral to the energy services portfolio. The company is the leading service provider of guaranteed energy savings projects and Energy Star® certified schools in Indiana. In 2009, Performance Services was named the #1 Best Places to Work employer for a midsize company in Indiana.