Benham $aves is a new program by the Benham Power Board that helps you, our customers, save energy and save money.
In the program, Power Board customers’ homes are upgraded to be more energy efficient. A portion of the savings from these upgrades are paid back right on the power bill while another portion stays right in the customer’s pocket. The customer pays no up-front costs. Repayment will take no more than 15 years and the customer keeps at least 15% of the savings. Once the upgrades are paid for, the customer keeps all of the savings.
The program helps our community all around. Benham residents save money by saving energy. That extra money stays right in our area to stimulate our economy. The program will also reduce the amount of energy the Power Board must buy from its wholesale power provider, helping to keep rates affordable in the long term.
Pick up an application from the Power Board. The information you provide, in addition to your electric billing and usage information, will help determine if you qualify for Benham $aves or other programs available from community partners.
If approved, you will receive a free home energy assessment. A technician will measure how much air flow the house allows using a blower door test, how much insulation there is, the amount of energy used by the HVAC systems, and so on.
Energy technicians will use the data from the energy assessment to create an energy savings plan. They will determine which kinds of upgrades will pay for themselves over time. For example, using spray foam to insulate may create enough savings over a few years to pay for the cost of installing the insulation. Each home will have its own unique plan.
Using the energy savings plan, contractors will then perform the work that will generate energy savings. There is no upfront cost to you, the customer. This work may include things like switching out an old electric furnace for a heat pump, installing insulation and/or air sealing the home.
The energy upgrades will reduce the amount of electricity used by the home, and thus reduce the power bill. You, the customer, will keep at least 15% of these savings and the rest will pay for the upgrades right on your electric bill. After the upgrades are paid for, you will keep all the savings.
Many people know Lacey Griffey for her delicious home cooking, especially her sweet potato pies. But did you also know her school house home is now energy efficient?
In January 2013, Lacey’s power bill was $600. That year the Benham Power Board worked with local nonprofits to make her home more energy efficient and to track the savings.
An energy assessment was performed, which helped find the best ways to tighten up Lacey’s home. It was insulated, air sealed, a new water heater installed and the HVAC system improved and repaired…and now Lacey’s savings are huge!
In January 2014, while the rest of Benham’s bills went up by 42% due to the extreme cold that month, Lacey’s bill was 56% lower, all while having a more comfortable home.
In Benham, we are proud of our unique place and our hard work. We have created great things for our country and community. We have mined the coal that has powered the development of our nation. We are proud of Black Mountain, the highest mountain in the state. We have worked to create a beautiful and unique town where folks want to continue to live and to visit.
The Benham $aves program is one more way that we can come together to improve our community now and to build a stronger future. We can start by helping save energy in our homes through this program. But we don’t need to stop there. We can make our public buildings more efficient and we can look toward generating some of our own power right in our own community.
CONTACT US TO LEARN MORE
Benham Power Board
P.O. Box 528
Benham, KY 40807
BENHAM $AVES COMMUNITY PARTNERS
- COAP, Inc.
- Kentuckians For The Commonwealth
- Mountain Association for Community Economic Development