Four rural utility cooperatives in Eastern Kentucky (Big Sandy RECC, Fleming-Mason RECC, Grayson RECC, and Jackson Energy) are teaming up with MACED to provide energy retrofits as part of utility service under the KY Energy Retrofit Rider. The program, called How$martKY, addresses the primary barrier households and small businesses face when they want to save energy and save money — finding the upfront cash to pay for improvements such as insulation, air-sealing and HVAC upgrades.
The program is not a loan or a subsidy, but an extension of the utility services that households or businesses are already receiving. After completing an energy assessment of the property and estimating the potential savings, the utility will oversee the contractor installing the energy efficiency upgrades and provide assurance that the improvements have been correctly installed.
After installation, the program allows customers to make installment payments as part of their monthly utility bills, gradually paying for the efficiency upgrades by using part of the energy savings generated by the retrofit. Immediately, customers will see savings on their typical utility bill. Because the charges remain with the property and not the customer, this approach works for all classes of utility customers — renters, homeowners or business owners.
How$martKY is a partner with Kentucky Home Performance and based on the How$mart® program from Midwest Energy (KS) and the PAYS® System from the Energy Efficiency Institute (VT).
Kentucky’s Public Service Commission approved the pilot in December 2010.