Local Governments: Get ready for the Public Buildings Enhanced Energy Efficiency Program!

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Local Government PBEEEP

Local Government PBEEEP is a program offered through the Department Of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources. PBEEEP, which stands for Public Buildings Enhanced Energy Efficiency Program, addresses energy efficiency in public buildings across Minnesota through a targeted recommissioning/ retrocommissioning (RCx) and retrofit project focus.

Energy affecting and energy consuming equipment, systems, and operations practices are evaluated to identify energy conservation opportunities that result in cost savings for the Local Government Unit (LGU). The majority of projects will follow a 4-phase project process: screening, investigation, implementation, and verification. A key component of PBEEEP is that the program provides LGUs access to project funding through a combination of co-funding and lease-purchase financing without the need to have budgeted for project services in advance.

Below are details on how your local government can participate in the program, and start preparing now so that you’re ready when the application is released in the next month or so.

How to prepare?

  • If you have not already, update your B3 account in the next 1-2 months with 12-24 months of recent utility data at http://www.mnbenchmarking.com.
  • Contact PBEEEP to express your local government’s interest in participating. They will be identifying the first round of project candidates from local governments that have previously expressed interest in the program.

How to apply?

  • The application is not yet available, but will be soon. PBEEEP will post the program application to the PBEEEP Local Government page. A communication will be sent out once the application is available.
  • To be eligible, you must be Local Government owned/operated facilities. PBEEEP projects follow a framework that centers on completing a comprehensive energy study that will produce energy use and cost reduction recommendations (only energy measures are eligible in PBEEEP).

What happens next?

  • Once your application is received, PBEEEP will notify the application contact and begin reviewing the information supplied. This review will determine when the project would start and which buildings will enter the first phase (Screening Phase). The program implementation plan is to ramp up project activities throughout the year so the initial number of project starts will be limited.
  • PBEEEP will then work with your technical and business staff to overview the program, assist your organization in working through the necessary paperwork to authorize the project (including an agreement for participation and cost-sharing), and begin to prepare for the Screening Phase. Although dependant on the anticipated project start date and the needs of your local government, this step is expected to take a couple of weeks.

To learn more, visit the Program Launch and Program Overview pages of the PBEEEP website. You can also download a factsheet about the program.

If you’re also looking for other financing mechanisms, you should check out a new tool and guide from the EPA focused on energy projects.

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