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Colorado Schools to Receives HVAC Improvements

May 10, 2024
New bill requires school boards of education to satisfy specified requirements for HVAC systems if federal funds are used.

HVAC Improvements for Public Schools

The Colorado state legislature has passed a bill to provide federal funding to Colorado public schools for specified heating, ventilation, air conditioning and air quality improvements.  

HB24-1307 -- the HVAC Improvements for Public Schools bill, will help school districts secure matching funds through the state to ensure the work is done by qualified workers.

The bill requires a school district board of education, a charter school, an institute charter school, a board of cooperative services, or the Colorado school for the deaf and the blind (school administrative entity) to satisfy certain requirements concerning installation, inspection, and maintenance of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems in schools if the school administrative entity undertakes HVAC infrastructure improvements using money made available by a federal government source or by a federal government source in combination with a state government source specifically for such purpose.

The requirements established in the bill concern:

  • Ventilation verification assessments, which include assessments of an HVAC system's filtration, ventilation exhaust, economizers, demand control ventilation, air distribution and building pressurization, general maintenance requirements, operational controls, and carbon dioxide output;
  • The preparation of HVAC assessment reports;
  • The review of HVAC assessment reports by mechanical engineers, who make recommendations regarding necessary repairs and improvements and estimate associated costs;
  • HVAC adjustments, repairs, upgrades, and replacements;
  • The preparation of HVAC verification reports and the submission of the reports to the state board of education; and
  • Periodic inspections and ongoing maintenance.

The bill establishes mandatory criteria that an HVAC contractor must satisfy in order to perform work described in the bill. A school administrative entity that undertakes HVAC infrastructure improvements using money made available by a federal government source or by a federal government source in combination with a state government source must do so using only contractors on the certified contractor list established by the department of labor and employment.

The bill allows a school administrative entity to apply for grants to pay for HVAC infrastructure improvement projects and establishes requirements for school administrative entities that apply for grants from federal and state government sources.

The bill requires the governor's office to use existing resources funded by the "Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act" ash fund to provide grant writing support, administrative support and project planning to school administrative entities that are undertaking HVAC infrastructure improvement projects.

The governor's office must submit a report to the joint budget committee and the capital development committee concerning the number of applicants for matching funds from school districts reviewed by the office before October 2, 2025. The report must include the amount of requested matching funds, the recommended amount of matching funds, and an explanation for the difference, if any, between the requested amounts and the recommended amounts

This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.