BPU customers may be seeing more rebate opportunities in 2013.
Dan Reynolds, energy efficiency coordinator for the BPU, unveiled a list of proposed changes and additional rebate opportunities for both residential and commercial customers during Tuesday's board meeting. If passed at the November board meeting, the changes and additions could add up for customers.
One program that will be continuing with some changes is the lighting and motors program.
"The incentives will be based on the actual wattage of the new LED fixtures," Reynolds said. "We're going to do a tiered rebate on it, and that's really just because of the cost of the fixtures. There's no reason why we should be rebating somebody as much for a street light as we are for a security-type of light."
Additionally, Reynolds said the BPU is still working to get customers through home energy audits. The audits are subsidized through the Green Jobs Green New York program.
"These are available for anyone that has an annual household income of under $106,000 a year," Reynolds said.
The incentives for the program would be increasing for 2013 as well. For customers who heat with natural gas, the incentives would increase to cover 25 percent, up to a maximum of $1,500, which is $500 more than the current offer.
Additionally, customers who heat with electric, the incentive would cover 50 percent, up to a maximum of $3,000, which is $1,000 more than the current offer.
There are now incentives available to customers through NYSERDA to help with weatherization costs. All customers are eligible for 10 percent, up to a maximum of $3,000 on qualifying measures. And, there is a program called Assisted Home Performance with Energy Star, which is available.
"Anybody who has 80 percent or below the average household income for the state of New York is eligible for a 50 percent incentive up to $5,000. This should cover quite a few people in our area," Reynolds said.
The Residential Energy Star and Attic Insulation programs will still be available, unchanged, in 2013. However, the BPU is hoping to introduce a solar initiative.
"We're hoping somewhere in the spring timeframe, the start of construction season, to offer some kind of incentive for solar," Reynolds told the board.
Currently, the BPU is working with an energy efficiency team in order to find an initiative that would be appropriate for solar paneling. Reynolds noted that in order to install solar paneling, certain criteria would need to be met, including obtaining a general construction permit from the city.
The formal resolutions will be submitted for board approval for the Nov. 27 meeting. If passed, the resolutions would be put in place for 2013.