April 21st, 2024

City accepting applications for clean energy program


By Alejandra Pulido-Guzman - Lethbridge Herald on March 30, 2024.

Herald photo by Alejandra Pulido-Guzman Larry Laverty, assessment and taxation manager and local CEIP manager, speaks to reporters about applications for the Clean Energy Improvement Program available with an increased rebate amount.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDapulido@lethbridgeherald.com

The City of Lethbridge announced Thursday the Clean Energy Improvement Program (CEIP) is accepting applications and this time with an increased rebate amount.

As a response to the federal government’s Canada Green Homes Grant being eliminated, the City of Lethbridge is increasing the rebate amount for CEIP applicants to $1,350 from $800.

Launched in late February of 2023, the CEIP provides eligible homeowners with a financial tool to support energy efficiency and renewable energy upgrades to their properties. With the goal of creating a more climate resilient community and lowering energy costs.

Larry Laverty, assessment and taxation manager and local CEIP manager, said Thursday the increase was possible because they have some unused funds that are now going to homeowners.

“We haven’t had to use the advertising dollars that we thought we’d have to use, so we were able to repurpose that into larger rebates for homeowners,” said Laverty.

When talking about the program, Laverty said last year they filled up very quickly, as they had a limited amount of applications available, but that has changed since.

“The program is active, we do get applications on a regular basis and we are filling up so probably the sooner you get in the better because once the money is spoken for the program is over,” said Laverty.

CEIP applications reached the initial capacity within a week last year, but Lethbridge city council unanimously voted to amend the Clean Energy Improvement Tax Bylaw to remove the previous annual cap amounts last October.

Eligible projects for the CEIP includes upgrading windows, doors, adding solar panels, increasing insulation, upgrading lighting fixtures, installing a tankless hot water system and more.

 “The process is all online so just go to our website, hit CEIP and it gives you instructions on how to apply for the program. We are in partnership with Alberta municipalities, so they also work on administering this program for us,” said Laverty.

The CEIP allows homeowners to apply for low interest financing from the City, with repayment collected through property tax bills during a span of up to 20 years, depending on the expected life of the improvement.

 There is also an option to repay it in full at any time without penalty and the financing can be transferred to the next owner if the home sells. Participants must install eligible upgrades with a minimum cost of $3,000 to qualify for financing.

 There is a maximum of $50,000 of eligible costs per property, but the annual Clean Energy Improvement Tax cannot exceed the property’s annual municipal property tax payment.

 For those interested, the first step is to reviews the program’s terms and conditions and submit a pre-qualification application at ceip.abmunis.ca/Lethbridge

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