Mayor’s bright idea lighting up Wilkes-Barre City Hall

By Jerry Lynott - [email protected]
Butch Frati, director of operations for Wilkes-Barre, shows off the type of LED lamp installed at City Hall to brighten up the appearance and reduce energy costs. Jerry Lynott | Times Leader Butch Frati, director of operations for Wilkes-Barre, shows off the type of LED lamp installed at City Hall to brighten up the appearance and reduce energy costs. - Jerry Lynott | Times Leader

WILKES-BARRE — The first day on the job Mayor George Brown had a bright idea.

Brown was sworn in Monday night and the next morning went to work to shed more light on the goings on at City Hall by installing new LED (light-emitting diode) lamps in the hallways and offices.

“It’s something. It’s a beginning. I’m only here a day and a half,” Brown said Wednesday.

Visitors and employees have noticed the difference and the city should see a 20-percent drop in its lighting costs with the energy-efficient lamps, the mayor said.

The switch opened the eyes of Butch Frati, the city’s Director of Operations.

Frati on Friday said the new mayor remarked about the dim lighting and appearance of City Hall. “It’s dreary in here,” Frati recalled Brown telling him.

Having been in the building for years, Frati said he was accustomed to it, adding, “You don’t realize it when you go to work every day.”

Frati said he’d been looking at improving the lighting before Brown took office and at the mayor’s direction came up with a plan.

“What we did, we took out the conventional bulbs and went with commercial grade LED lights,” Frati said.

Holding a Greenignite brand 100-watt LED lamp, the type installed at City Hall, Frati said it has an annual cost of $2.17 at three hours of usage daily. The city’s cost will be higher based on the eight to 10 hours of usage, he acknowledged.

The lamps cost around $32 each, three times the cost of a typical good bulb, Frati said, but they will pay for themselves after a year and last longer than a regular incandescent or fluorescent light.

The plan is to replace the bulbs throughout the building, Frati said. “We started in the hallways. The hallways are what people see most,” he said.

Butch Frati, director of operations for Wilkes-Barre, shows off the type of LED lamp installed at City Hall to brighten up the appearance and reduce energy costs.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/web1_WB-LED.jpgButch Frati, director of operations for Wilkes-Barre, shows off the type of LED lamp installed at City Hall to brighten up the appearance and reduce energy costs. Jerry Lynott | Times Leader

By Jerry Lynott

[email protected]

Reach Jerry Lynott at 570-991-6120 or on Twitter @TLJerryLynott.

Reach Jerry Lynott at 570-991-6120 or on Twitter @TLJerryLynott.