New Jersey Boards of Education (BOEs) and certain New Jersey located Small Businesses are eligible for a New Jersey (NJ) Clean Energy Program School and Small Business Energy Stimulus Program Fund grant.
Eligible BOEs include NJ located public schools, whether local school districts, consolidated school districts, regional school districts, county vocational schools or charter schools.
Eligible small businesses include NJ located businesses that meet the following criteria: no more than 100 full-time employees independently owned and operated, annual gross revenues, which do not exceed $12 million, and, importantly, certification by the State of New Jersey as a Minority and/or Woman Business Enterprise (M/WBE) located in an Underserved Community. Underserved Communities are those NJ municipalities with a school district where 75% of public school students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals under the National School Lunch Program. There are Underserved Communities present in the Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Hudson, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset and Union municipalities of NJ.
Additionally, for the SSB-VEEVR program, any Small Business located within a New Jersey municipality where a qualifying school district is located will be deemed located in an Underserved Community.
What can the School and Small Business Energy Stimulus Program Fund grant pay for and how much is available?
Program grants will provide no more than 75% of the cost of projects approved by the Program Administrator and 75% of School and Small Business Energy Stimulus Program funds will be awarded to eligible Schools and M/WBE Small Businesses.
The SSB-VEEVR and SSB-NPFA Programs both pay for up to 75% of the cost to repair and/or replace equipment. These grants equate to 75% of the cost of the approved project cost (equal to the sum of approved individual site budgets for all eligible sites included in an application), subject to certain provisions regarding coordination with other energy efficiency programs. Utility program funding and financing may also be available for 25% share.
For projects that are already completed, but by no more than 12 months prior to the launch of this Program, the NJBPU may provide program grant funding to cover qualifying associated costs and consultant fees associated with necessary Program assessments.
Each applicant is subject to the following Program Grant Caps: $500K Program Grant Cap per Small Business and $5M Program Grant Cap per BOE. Should it be applied for, incentive funding from either Program also counts towards the incentive cap. NJBPU staff can increase or decrease any or every Program Grant Cap based on program participation, demand, or other factors.
All Funds will be issued at project completion upon receipt, review, and approval of all final required reports.
What work is eligible for each Program and what is required?
Grants can assist in paying for work relating to either a maintenance or replacement / renewal pathway of either Program.
SSB-NPFA Program: Noncompliant Plumbing Fixtures and Appliances
Applications to the SSB-NPFA Program need to demonstrate the existence of Noncompliant Plumbing Fixtures or Noncompliant Appliances and include a cost estimate verified by a contractor for their replacement. Awards are made based on verified cost estimates.
Eligible applicants can replace Noncompliant Plumbing Fixtures and Noncompliant Appliances with water-conserving plumbing fixtures and appliances. As a ‘rule of thumb’, many non-compliant appliances or fixtures will be over 10 years old.
Program Grants may only be used for costs directly related to the replacement of the Noncompliant Plumbing Fixtures and Noncompliant Appliances described below:
Noncompliant plumbing fixtures exceeding the following water usage levels:
- Toilets with water consumption : over 1.6 gallons per flush
- Urinals with water consumption: over 1 gallon per flush.
- Showerheads with water flow capacity: over 2.5 gallons per minute.
- Interior faucets with water emission: over 2.2 gallons per minute.
Noncompliant appliances as follows:
- Commercial dishwashers not complying with the efficiency requirement of the ENERGY STAR® Product Specification for Commercial Dishwashers (Version 2.0) and manufactured before January 1 2010
- Commercial clothes washers not complying with the efficiency requirement of the ENERGY STAR Product Specification for Clothes Washers, (Version 8.0) and manufactured before January 1 2010
- Automatic commercial ice makers not complying with the efficiency requirement of the ENERGY STAR Product Specification for Automatic Commercial Ice Makers (Version 3.0) and manufactured before January 1, 2010
Note, these SSB-NPFA grants are not available for purchase of new equipment that is not an integral part of the project or for consultant fees other than those directly for the assessment the Program funds.
Proper Disposal/Recycling Requirements
SSB-NPFA grant recipients shall dispose of or recycle all Noncompliant Plumbing Fixtures and Noncompliant Appliances in compliance with all local ordinances, standards, and requirements. Noncompliant Plumbing Fixtures and Noncompliant Appliances are to be removed from service as part of this program and are not to be resold or reinstalled.
SSB-VEEVR Program: Ventilation and Energy Efficiency Verification and Repair
Each project awarded a Program Grant will follow only one grant pathway and should complete the process and meet the requirements as described for that grant pathway.
SSB-VEEVR Pathway options:
HVAC Assessment and Maintenance Pathway: This pathway is available for HVAC maintenance, repair, and minor system repairs and upgrades, but excludes the installation of new HVAC units.
HVAC Assessment and Replacement/New System Pathway: This pathway is available for the purchase and installation of a new HVAC system or unit, by way of replacement, addition, or otherwise. Applicants should provide supporting documentation showing that existing HVAC equipment (if present) is unable to comply with the minimum ventilation and filtration program standards without an HVAC system or unit replacement. All proposed new systems or HVAC system replacements should comply with or exceed program ventilation and filtration standards and any new or replacement HVAC system should also comply with the necessary and cost-effectiveness standards.
SSB-VEEVR Eligible costs:
Grant award funding can only be used for direct costs and work performed in accordance with the terms of this Program including HVAC assessment and testing, new system or unit installation, carbon dioxide monitor installation, preparation of the HVAC Assessment Report, and preparation of a HVAC Verification Report.
SSB-VEEVR Ineligible costs:
Costs that are ineligible include, but are not limited to, those costs associated with the use and continuous monitoring of the carbon dioxide monitors, such as electrical improvements, subscription services, storage, and central hubs, purchase of equipment that is not an integral part of the project, costs for boilers or other types of HVAC equipment that do not directly and significantly affect ventilation or airflow and consultant fees (other than those for Qualified Personnel and Certified Energy Auditors) or for equipment installed prior to application approval.
Prevailing Wage Requirement:
It is worth noting that the Program grants constitute financial assistance provided by the NJBPU and can therefore be subject to prevailing wage requirements pursuant to the Prevailing Wage Act and the associated regulations. Applicants are to self-certify compliance with all applicable prevailing wage requirements relating to the work covered by Program grants. The NJ Department of Labor and Workforce Development is authorized to interpret and enforce prevailing wage requirements.