Weatherization Blitz To Help Lower Income New
Yorkers With Winter Home Heating Costs
New York Power Authority And Village
Of Solvay Kick Off Energy Efficiency Program
December 3, 2008
Photo and Caption
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOLVAY— New York Power Authority (NYPA) President
and Chief Executive Officer Richard M. Kessel was joined today by
Solvay Mayor Tony Modafferi to kick off the Power Authority’s
“Weatherization Blitz” program in Central New York and the Mohawk
Valley 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 Solvay Electric Department
for the lower-income residents they serve.”
“The Village of Solvay is pleased to be part of the
Weatherization Blitz program sponsored by the New York Power
Authority,” said Tony Modafferi. “In these tough economic times it
is essential that this energy saving program for low income
households be implemented not only here in Solvay, but throughout
New York State. Municipal Entities have made great strides in energy
savings thru the years and this new program will be an added benefit
to those qualified families and their Municipality. I am looking
forward to the kick off of the Weatherization Program and am honored
to be a part of it. Thank You New York Power Authority for taking
the lead on this important program and allowing all New York State
Municipal Systems the chance to participate as well.”
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 Solvay, several other NYPA municipal
and rural cooperative customers have joined in the Weatherization
Blitz program. In Central New York, the electric departments of
Skaneateles, Groton and Marathon have agreed to participate. In the
Mohawk Valley, the Oneida-Madison Cooperative and the electric
departments in Sherrill, Hamilton, Boonville, Sherburne, Frankfort,
Mohawk and Ilion also have signed up.
Kessel noted that this rural cooperative and these
electric departments alone, which have in total nearly 19,000
customers, have identified some 2,550 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.
For the Power Authority, this program is being
handled by Maribel Cruz, Business Development and Engineering
Facilitator in the Energy Services and Technology business unit.
■ 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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