Propane shortage and restrictions

Today the College was informed by our propane supplier that the shortage we announced yesterday to campus has become even more severe due to the prolonged, record-cold temperatures in the Northeast. As a result, our supplier has reduced delivery levels to our campus and has not been able to completely fill our propane tanks. We are in ongoing communication with our propane vendor, and they are doing all that they can to meet our needs. The College is also working hard to purchase additional propane through alternate vendors, but the shortage in this entire region of the U.S. is making that difficult.

Messiah, like other residential and institutional propane customers in our region, is being asked to voluntarily conserve its energy usage. The College’s goal is to keep our campus community safe and operational until temperatures increase and propane delivery can resume its normal levels. To this end, the following conservation changes/restrictions will be in place through 11 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28:

Centrally controlled building temperatures: We will continue adjusting all centrally controlled room temperatures at a 68-degree hold during the hours of 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., and at 60 degrees between 7 p.m.- 7 a.m. (with the exception of the Larsen Student Union; see below).

  • Due to these changes, employees are permitted to dress during this time in appropriate casual wear, i.e., jeans are acceptable, Messiah College logo wear, other office-appropriate casual clothing (in keeping with your professional responsibilities for each day). If you have questions, please consult with your supervisor.

Larsen Student Union: Effective immediately, the hours of operation for the student union are changed to 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. (during which time a temperature hold of 68 degrees will be in effect).

  • Food service in the Union Café will temporarily be limited to salads, soups, deli and grab-and-go menu items only (no hot food service will be available).
  • The Division of Student Affairs and Dining Services will be in communication with their employees and students who are assigned to that building to discuss the impact on their work schedule.

Sollenberger Sports Center: Effective immediately, there will be no use of the showers in the sports center for students and employees who use those athletic facilities.

  • Note: Exception is granted for student-athletes training on Messiah’s wrestling team and for visiting athletes who will be on campus for the wrestling invitational tournament this weekend.

Swimming pool closed: Effective immediately, the swimming pool and diving pool will be closed for all college-related and external activities.

Climenhaga Homestead and McBeth Advancement Center: No new reservations will be taken for the Climenhaga Homestead Guest House and the employees in the adjoining McBeth Advancement Center will be temporarily relocated.

Shower conservation: Effective immediately, all students and employees who live on campus are being asked to avoid running hot water unnecessarily and to restrict their showers to three minutes or less to conserve hot water usage.

Preliminary forecasts predict that the outside temperatures will begin to moderate early next week, and it is our hope that our energy supply and operations can return to normal. In the interim, all staff and students are reminded that portable space heaters are prohibited for use in our campus buildings due to their severe safety/fire threat.

The College is grateful for the patience, understanding and partnership of all students and employees as we work through this unprecedented month of extreme temperatures and the energy shortage it has created. Thank you for working together during the next several days to conserve and meet this challenge as a campus community.