Weatherization Blitz to Help Lower Income New
Yorkers With Winter Home Heating Costs:
New York Power Authority and Villages of Freeport and
Rockville Centre Kick Off Energy Efficiency Program
November 13, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FREEPORT—New York Power Authority (NYPA) President
and Chief Executive Officer Richard M. Kessel was joined today by
Freeport Mayor William Glacken and Rockville Centre Mayor Mary W.
Bossart to kick off the Power Authority’s “Weatherization Blitz”
program on Long Island that will help lower-income residents reduce
their home heating costs by 10 to 15 percent this winter.
The initiative centers on the distribution of
weatherization kits containing items to help improve heating,
lighting and water efficiency in the home, and also includes energy
conservation guide booklets with additional savings tips.
"Even in these challenging economic times, New York
has an obligation to do all it can to help its most vulnerable
residents. It is critically important that the state and
municipalities provide assistance to needy families trying to cope
with exorbitant home heating costs," said Governor David A.
Paterson. "The NYPA Weatherization Blitz is a key component in
helping low-income New Yorkers reduce their power bills by making
their homes more energy efficient. The cheapest energy is the energy
that is never used."
“The Weatherization Blitz Program is part of a
comprehensive plan announced in September by Governor Paterson to
help needy New Yorkers handle their home heating costs this winter,”
said Kessel. “While fossil-fuel prices have fallen with the downturn
in the economy, heating costs can still make a serious dent in
family budgets, particularly for low-income households. The Power
Authority is pleased to support the Governor’s overall efforts
through our distribution of these weatherization kits to
community-owned electric systems like the Freeport and Rockville
Centre Electric Departments for the lower-income residents they
William Glacken, mayor of the Village of Freeport,
said: "The Village of Freeport would like to thank Governor Paterson
and NYPA President Kessel for bringing this Winterization program to
New Yorkers. These are challenging times for our customers. With the
high cost of fuel, a sluggish economy, and predictions of another
tough winter season approaching, Governor Paterson’s Winter
Weatherization program will lessen the financial blow to our
customers by helping New Yorkers reduce their utility bills. Energy
matters more now than ever before as it affects our environment and
our pocket books as well. The Village of Freeport is extremely
enthusiastic about this program and looks forward to implementing
it. We commend Governor Paterson, President Kessel and the staff of
the New York Power Authority for coordinating this important energy
Mary W. Bossart, mayor of the Village of Rockville
Centre, said: "Rockville Centre is proud to be assisting NYPA in
making a success of its Winter Home Heating and Energy Tune-Up
program. We thank the Power Authority for taking the lead in
providing assistance to our low-income residents this winter. We
look forward to working with the Power Authority on this project and
others to come, in the interests of providing clean, safe and
economical energy to all of our residents."
“Considering the cost of energy today, I applaud
the New York Power Authority’s proactive approach to help Long
Island homeowners reduce their bills. Promoting energy efficiency
not only helps homeowners save money, it helps preserve our
environment,” said Nassau County Legislator Dave Denenberg.
"CDC is delighted to be hosting this important
event and commends NYPA’s initiative to make available energy
savings measures to the low income community,” said Marianne Garvin,
President and Chief Operating Officer of the Community Development
Center of Long Island.
The eligibility standard for the weatherization
kits is in line with the qualification under the Low Income Home
Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), a federally funded initiative.
The average family of four must make less than $45,000 gross income
annually to be eligible.
In addition to Freeport and Rockville Centre on
Long Island, the Village of Greenport, another NYPA customer, has
also agreed to participate in the program. Kessel noted that the
three Long Island electric departments, which have in total over
23,000 customers, have identified some 875 households for the
weatherization kits and believe there is the likelihood of other
The Power Authority is expecting to distribute
between 20,000 to 30,000 kits to municipal electric systems and
rural cooperatives in various parts of the state.
The weatherization kits include caulk for doors and
windows; weather-stripping and door sweeps; shrink-fit window kits;
compact fluorescent bulbs and an LED nightlight fixture; a hot-water
temperature gauge and refrigerator thermometer; and a low-flow
showerhead and faucet aerators. The kits also include equipment for
testing for radon gas, which comes from the natural decay in uranium
that is found in nearly all soils.
In September, the Power Authority Trustees
authorized up to five million dollars for the Weatherization Blitz
Program, stemming from a directive by Governor Paterson for state
agencies and public authorities to consider ways to make
home-heating costs more affordable this winter.
Other elements of the governor’s comprehensive plan
for helping low-income New Yorkers with their energy costs include:
significant increases in benefits and changes to eligibility levels
for the state’s heating assistance program; an additional $49
million for household energy efficiency programs, including NYPA’s
initiative; and improved agency administration of efficiency and
heating assistance programs.
For more information on the State's heating
assistance programs and ways to make your home more energy
efficient, please visit www.HeatSmartNY.org, or call (877) NY-SMART.
With its low-cost hydropower, the Power Authority
meets the bulk of the electricity needs of the state’s 51 municipal
electric systems and rural cooperatives.
■ NYPA uses no tax money or
state credit. It finances its operations through the sale of
bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of
electricity. ■ NYPA is a leader in promoting
energy-efficiency, new energy technologies and electric
transportation initiatives. ■ It is the
nation’s largest state-owned electric utility, with 18 generating
facilities in various parts of the state and more than 1,400
circuit-miles of transmission lines.
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