The Illinois DCEO Solar and Wind Energy Rebate Program open NOW

09 Sep 2013 4:15 PM | Lesley McCain (Administrator)

 

The IL DCEO made the following announcement for the state rebate program today 9/9/13

The program guidelines and application will become available on this date at our website at http://www.illinoisbiz.biz/dceo/Bureaus/Energy_Recycling/Energy/Clean+Energy/01-RERP.htm.

 

All applications must be submitted, without exception, on these new forms for Fiscal Year 2014 and must be filled out completely and signed and dated by both the applicant and the installer/project manager. Any applications received under previous application forms will be rejected.


  Here are some key changes we are making to the rebate program from previous years:

  • We have changed the system for considering rebate applications from first come first serve to random selection (Section 3.1 of new guidelines). We will accept applications until October 31, 2013. Applications will be assigned a number as they are received, and we will have a pre-selected list of random numbers that we will use as the order we will consider applications. We will keep moving down the list of applications based on the random numbers list until all rebate funds have been allocated. The remaining applications will be on our waiting list and will be considered (again, based on the random number list) as projects are cancelled or if additional funds become available.
    We are requiring that the application be submitted by the applicant. While the installer/developer may assist in filling out application and organizing the required documents, the application cannot be sent to us by the installer.
    We added language in section 2.6 to require any project that is completed after December 31, 2013 must be completed by a certified distributed energy installer (as will be required by ICC rules)

We have also made some changes to the incentives


• Will keep $10,000 as maximum rebate for residential, but increase it to $20,000 for businesses, and $30,000 for public sector/non-profits; lowered per watt incentive for businesses installing PV from $1.50 to $1.25 per watt (or 25% of cost, whichever is less)


• Changing incentives for wind energy projects – keeping it at $1.75 per watt if applicants install a SWCC (Small Wind Certification Council) certified turbine, but only a $1.00 per watt for turbines that are not SWCC certified


We have also added appendix C that provides a template for installer certification letter – this letter is required at the completion of a project.


We prefer that applications be submitted via email (ceo.rerp@illinois/gov), though we do also allow applications be sent through regular mail.  However, please do not submit both ways – we just need one copy of the application.  If you send applications by email, you will receive a response that your application has been received.  And again the application must be send by the rebate applicant.


We have allocated a minimum of $1.5 million to the rebate program this fiscal years, similar to what we have had available the last few years.

We have changed the system for considering rebate applications from first come first serve to random selection (Section 3.1 of new guidelines). We will accept applications until October 31, 2013. Applications will be assigned a number as they are received, and we will have a pre-selected list of random numbers that we will use as the order we will consider applications. We will keep moving down the list of applications based on the random numbers list until all rebate funds have been allocated. The remaining applications will be on our waiting list and will be considered (again, based on the random number list) as projects are cancelled or if additional funds become available.


We are requiring that the application be submitted by the applicant. While the installer/developer may assist in filling out application and organizing the required documents, the application cannot be sent to us by the installer.


We added language in section 2.6 to require any project that is completed after December 31, 2013 must be completed by a certified distributed energy installer (as will be required by ICC rules)


We prefer that applications be submitted via email at ceo.rerp@illinois.gov, though we do also allow applications be sent through regular mail.  However, please do not submit both ways – we just need one copy of the application.  If you send applications by email, you will receive a response that your application has been received.  And again the application must be send by the rebate applicant.


We have allocated a minimum of $1.5 million to the rebate program this fiscal years, similar to what we have had available the last few years.

Webinar Q&A

Q: There is a 2% limit on rate increases. Are you sure this is not a problem? The rate increase is in reference to the total procurement, so we do not anticipate it being an issue.


Q: I am a homeowner. Your invitation stated you may have some new information concerning Gov. Rauner's budget. That's what I'm particularly interested in. The proposed budget for 2015/2016, at this time has eliminated rebates and grants. ISEA’s position is that we will continue to advocate for the continuation of this program. There is also a legislative bill that has proposed an extension to this program through 2020 which we support and will continue to track.


Q: Can you provide an REC typical value for an average sized home with this proposed declining block program? I have a hard time explaining the value of RECs. Since Illinois has not had a REC price in the past, it’s difficult to estimate what the initial market value may be. The supplemental procurement will go a long way in establishing Illinois REC market prices. In the meantime, the Illinois Power Agency (IPA) will continue to research other markets to make the best decisions for the Illinois market. The goal, of course, is to install solar, and the purpose of the REC is to incentivize solar purchases and ensure pricing makes economic sense. As a reminder, there’s still a bit of the process left before we see what price RECs will have in Illinois. Once the legislation has been passed, and the REC price is published, we’ll update as needed.


Q: What recs are available for people who installed solar systems in 2014? If the system was energized prior to January 21, 2015, you qualify for the regular procurement event in September 2015.


Q: Does Exelon nuclear energy qualify as renewable energy with the 35% by 2030? It does not. Renewable energy is defined within the statute and includes wind, solar, and biofuels. More information can be found at http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/fulltext.asp?DocName=&SessionId=88&GA=99&DocTypeId=HB&DocNum=2607&GAID=13&LegID=88134&SpecSess=&Session=

It is important to note that the Clean Jobs Bill, not to be confused with other energy bills, is the only bill that focuses on renewable energy while producing 32000 jobs per year.


Q: Will clean energy that has already been produced from existing systems be considered for auction? No. The RECs will only be from the contract date of the accepted bid moving forward.


Q: If I plan to install more solar panels in 2015, are IL rebates still available, or is it dependent on Governor Rauner's budget proposal? The program for the 2014/2015 fiscal year is closed. So any future rebate availability will depend on the budget proposal. However, consider the procurement events of 2015/2016 as potential funding sources.  This scenario strongly highlights why we need to pass the Clean Jobs Bill (HB2607/SB1485) as it will provide a way to raise the status of renewable energy to equal that of all other forms of energy. Thus, any perceived dependence on rebates and grants will be removed.


Q: Evidently the 2014/20­15 rebates were frozen. Is that still the case? At this time, rebate decision letters have gone out, clarifying which will be paid and informing the owners that no further extensions will be granted.


Q: When will the specific process of solar customers contracting to be paid for future SRECs in place of the Illinois DCEO Rebate program be rolled out?­ The first supplemental procurement will be June 18, 2015. Aggregators are already available. We have a list of preferred companies here http://www.illinoissolar.org/SRECTrade-FAQ


Q: Once the REC schedule is defined, can you post some investment payback time scenarios on the ISEA blog, including the declining block ­ to let people know what is a realistic investment outlook?

We will try, however, we don’t anticipate seeing any information on this until early to mid 2016.



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