Conservation Improvement Program staff want to remind utility CIP administrators that policy guidance on low-income verification and delivered fuels is available on the Policy Guidance, Protocols and Forms section of the website.
In August 2012, the Division of Energy Resources (DER) distributed two policy guidance documents to utility CIP administrators:
Low-Income Verification. During the Minnesota Environmental Initiative 1.5 Percent Energy Efficiency Solution Project (MEI process), one of the issues for the Low-Income Technical Work Group (LITWG) was to develop strategies to increase conservation investment in rental housing. This issue was further evaluated by the Rental Housing Energy Efficiency Work Group (convened by MinnCAP). The work group determined there was a lack of guidance on what qualifies as low income, which created a challenge to delivering and developing CIP offerings for low-income customers and rental properties. The low-income verification guidance (.pdf) makes use of documents associated with existing affordability programs, whose definitions of low income are accepted by DER, to identify buildings that will be occupied by a reasonable proportion of low-income residents for multiple years to justify that CIP spending will benefit low-income customers. This guidance focuses on housing that has five or more units.
Delivered Fuels. During the MEI process, one of the issues for LITWG was to develop a methodology to account for delivered fuels and small gas weatherization savings through electric utility conservation programs. The delivered fuels guidance allows electric utilities to offer space heating and domestic hot water conservation measures in circumstances where low-income customers do not have access to CIP programming.