ICPA wrote and succeeded in getting passed into law the first Fuel Oil Conservation Fund in America in 2009. With an initial funding of $15,000,000, the objective of the Fund was to upgrade old, inefficient heating systems among the poorest of our citizens who qualified for low income energy assistance.
A succession of budget cuts from the state saw the withdrawal of $13.5 million of the $15 million, leaving the Fund with $1.5 million on which to operate in 2009/10. In serving more than 400 low income residents, for every $1 the fund spent improving the energy efficiency of heating systems we saw $3 in energy savings. This cuts the need for the amount of taxpayer-funded LIHEAP benefits through lower energy consumption.
The 2011 budget for Connecticut provides “0” funding for this program. This is not the Earth Day contribution to energy savings and improving energy conservation we wanted but we continue to fight in Hartford to fund programs that cut energy use through improving energy conservation.