Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

Section 125-O:23

    125-O:23 Energy Efficiency Fund and Use of Auction Proceeds. –
I. There is hereby established an energy efficiency fund. This nonlapsing, special fund shall be continually appropriated to the department of energy to be expended in accordance with this section. The state treasurer shall invest the moneys deposited therein, as provided by law. Income received on investments made by the state treasurer shall also be credited to the fund. All programs supported by these funds shall be subject to audit by the department of energy as deemed necessary. A portion of the fund moneys shall be used to pay for department of energy and department of environmental services costs to administer this subdivision, including contributions for the state's share of the costs of the RGGI regional organization. No fund moneys shall be used by the department of energy or the department of environmental services to contract with outside consultants. The department of energy shall transfer from the fund to the department of environmental services such costs as may be budgeted and expended, or otherwise approved by the fiscal committee of the general court and the governor and council, for the department's cost of administering this subdivision.
II. All amounts in excess of the threshold price of $1 for any allowance sale shall be rebated to all retail electric ratepayers in the state on a per-kilowatt-hour basis, in a timely manner to be determined by the commission.
III. All remaining proceeds received by the state from the sale of allowances, excluding the amount used for department of energy and department of environmental services administration under paragraph I, shall be allocated by the commission as follows:
(a) At least 15 percent to the low-income core energy efficiency program.
(b) Beginning January 1, 2014, up to $2,000,000 annually to utility core programs for municipal and local government energy efficiency projects, including projects by local governments that have their own municipal utilities. Funding elements shall include, but not be limited to, funding for direct technical and project management assistance to identify and encourage comprehensive projects and incentives structured to assist municipal and local governments funding energy efficiency projects. In calendar years 2014, 2015, and 2016, any unused funds allocated to municipal and local government projects under this paragraph remaining at the end of the year shall roll over and be added to the new calendar year program funds and continue to be made available exclusively for municipal and local government projects. Beginning in calendar year 2017, and all subsequent years, funds allocated to municipal and local government projects under this paragraph shall be offered first to municipal and local governments as described in this paragraph for no less than 4 full calendar months. If, at the end of this time, municipal and local governments have not submitted requests for eligible projects that will expend the funds allocated to municipal and local government projects under this paragraph within that program year, the funds shall be offered on a first-come, first-serve basis to business and municipal customers who fund the system benefits charge.
(c) The remainder to all-fuels, comprehensive energy efficiency programs administered by qualified parties which may include electric distribution companies as selected through a competitive bid process. The funding shall be distributed among residential, commercial, and industrial customers based upon each customer class's electricity usage to the greatest extent practicable as determined by the commission. Bids shall be evaluated based on, but not limited to, the following criteria:
(1) A benefit/cost ratio analysis including all fuels.
(2) Demonstrated ability to provide a comprehensive, fuel neutral program.
(3) Demonstrated infrastructure to effectively deliver such program.
(4) Experience of the bidder in administering energy efficiency programs.
(5) Ability to reach out to customers.
(6) The validity of the energy saving assumptions described in the bid.
IV. The division of policy and programs of the department of energy shall conduct a competitive bid process for the selection of programs to be funded under subparagraph III(c), with such funding to begin January 1, 2015. The department of energy may petition the governor and council to extend existing contracts until such time as the competitive bids are approved by the governor and council, but in no event later than July 1, 2015. The competitive bid process shall be repeated every 3 years thereafter. Before extending any existing program, public comment on the proposed extension shall be accepted.
V. Each entity receiving funding under subparagraph III(c) shall file an annual report on the performance of the entity's program. The department of energy shall establish the format, content, and the methodologies used to provide the content of the reports. The department of energy shall make use of, as applicable and appropriate, the monitoring and verification requirements used in the natural gas and electric utility core programs. The annual reports shall be delivered to the governor, the president of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, the chairmen of the senate and house standing committees with jurisdiction over energy matters, the commissioner of the department of energy and the chairperson of the public utilities commission. The reports shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(a) Program expenditures, including direct customer installation costs.
(b) Resulting actual and projected energy savings by fuel type and associated CO2 emissions reductions.
(c) Any measurement and verification data that corroborate projected savings.
(d) The number of customers served by the programs.
(e) Other data as required by the commission in order to determine program effectiveness.

Source. 2008, 182:2. 2009, 236:2. 2012, 281:4. 2013, 236:11, 240:1; 269:2. 2014, 330:1, 2, eff. Oct. 3, 2014. 2021, 91:293, eff. July 1, 2021.