Electrical Load Reduction Memo

Dear PPS Employees,


Our aging buildings pose many challenges. One significant problem district-wide is that our electrical infrastructure is inadequate to meet today’s needs. When we exceed the electrical load capacity in our buildings, we create a potential fire hazard, putting staff and students at risk. It also adds to our electrical bills and is environmentally unsound.


Facilities & Asset Management (FAM) is working to reduce the electrical plug load in all PPS facilities, while still supporting educational needs. Please work collaboratively with FAM on this issue. These rules help PPS meet safety code requirements that are enforceable by law and have financial ramifications to the district and our schools.




When staff uses personal appliances, it increases the load on our overburdened electrical systems. Educational support functions, such as computers and audiovisual equipment directly related to classroom learning, must take priority over personal appliance use.


We are asking all staff to help us reduce the use of personal appliances in our buildings – first on a voluntary basis during the 2010-2011 school year, and on a mandatory basis in 2011-2012.


Moving forward, please limit your personal appliances at work to:

·       A desk lamp (with compact fluorescent bulb or LED, if possible, to minimize electrical draw)

·       A personal fan

·       A clock and radio, and

·       Cell phone or headset chargers.

Other personal-use items, such as space heaters, mini-refrigerators and microwaves will no longer be allowed.


FAM’s field operations supervisors and custodians will work with school principals to monitor personal appliance use in buildings.




PPS will make reasonable accommodations for employees with a disability to use additional personal appliances. Accommodation requests can be made through the Human Resources Department at ext. 63544.


Thank you for your cooperation and support.  Together we can improve fire safety, reduce PPS utility bills and help our environment.


C.J. Sylvester

Chief Operating Officer

Portland Public Schools