Contractor Newsletter - September 2020 

SCEIP Financing News: Division Manager Honored with Award

Jane Elias, Energy and Sustainability Division Manager Honored with 2020 PACESetter Award

PACENation, the non-profit organization that advocates for expanded access to Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing, has honored Jane Elias, the County of Sonoma’s Energy and Sustainability Division Manager, as a recipient of a 2020 PACESetter Award for excellence in program design and implementation. Jane is one of six recipients across the nation to receive the prestigious award.

“Jane is a passionate and proven energy and sustainability expert”, said Erick Roeser the County’s Auditor, Controller, Treasurer, Tax Collector and SCEIP Program Administrator. “Recently, she led the charge to expand the County’s PACE program to include wildfire safety and seismic improvements, and her leadership has helped to make SCEIP a gold standard in the industry. I am honored to work with Jane and the County of Sonoma is fortunate to have her as program manager.”

PACE programs allow a property owner to finance the up-front cost of energy or other eligible improvements on a property and then pay the costs back over time through a voluntary assessment. The County’s PACE program known as the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program has been in operation since 2009 and has financed over 84 million dollars in improvements. The Program finances energy, water, generation, seismic and wildfire safety improvements for residential and commercial buildings, with a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and making buildings more comfortable, durable and resilient. In addition, the Program provides consumer protections and assurances for its applicants.

Congratulations Jane!

Looking for New Clients, Well They Might be Looking for You

We’ve just begun our new workshop series and found it wildly popular with over 300 Sonoma County homeowners attending in just the first two weeks. This means LEADS from potential clients! Don’t miss an opportunity to be found on our website, https://sonomacountyenergy.force.com/financing/s/find-a-contractor.

The contractor search tool can be filtered by services offered or sort by locally operated companies. There is even a feature to email contractors directly. Make sure that you aren’t missing out on leads. Check out the search and confirm your information is listed correctly. To make changes, contact your account manager or email SCEIP@sonoma-county.org.

Fires – Unsafe Air – Covid-19 – Power Outages: What Is Going To Happen Next?

No one knows what is “yet to come." What we do know are things we can control like: Fire hardening – Healthier Homes – Solar/Battery Power Sources.

The question of HOW to address these issues starts with your client conversations. Listening to your clients responses when you ask questions will increase your business and allow you the opportunity to refer business to other contractors (when you refer someone they are 90% more likely to refer you when the opportunity arises). So start asking these types of questions:

  • Do you hear the wind outside while you are inside your home?
  • Can you smell the smoke filled air inside your home?
  • Do you have a 5 foot defensible space around your home
  • Is your roof a fire barrier, or a fire hazard?
  • Do you have covered gutters to prevent them from collecting fire kindling?
  • What is your plan when the power goes out?
  • What are you doing to make your home/office a healthier environment?

If you can promote your services to address these property owner issues, or refer them to someone you know, we can fund the improvement for the property owner. Solar and Battery Solutions, Class A Roofing, Fire Resistant Covered Gutter systems, new Windows, Insulation and Siding, and Hardscaping to create defensible space. All these improvements are answers to lessening the impacts of the unexpected.

Let’s work together to build a stronger, healthier, and more comfortable Sonoma County.

Resources for Contractors: Green Business Certification

Are you a Certified Sonoma County Green Business?

SCEIP financing is not all that we do, we also manage the Green Business Certification for Sonoma County. Being a Certified Green Business is the clearest way to show our community and customers that you care about sustainability. It shows them that you are committed to taking action to conserve resources and prevent pollution in both your facility and operations. It is a free certification that will provide you with the following benefits:

  • Free technical assistance on energy, water and waste
  • Improved employee wellness and productivity
  • Local and Statewide recognition
  • Lower utilities
  • Marketing edge over competitors

Bonus! Currently, there is a rebate available to assist businesses with updates and upgrades that are required to become a Certified Green Business. Up to $500 per business is available on first-come first-served basis, until the available funds are spent.

Resources for Contractors: ESD Tool Lending Library

ESD Tool Lending Library Accepting Reservations for Curbside Pick Up and Drop Off

COVID-19 Update: For the health and safety of our staff and our borrowers, the County of Sonoma Energy and Sustainability Office is currently not open to the public at this time. Tool pick up and drop off will be available through pre-scheduled curbside pick-up. Tool requests must be submitted by email a minimum of two full business days prior to the requested pick up date. Borrowers must wear a mask and respect social distancing protocols at all times during pick up and drop off.

Upcoming Training Opportunities

BayREN and Energy and Sustainability Division No-Cost Online Training

Accredited Green Appraiser Training

PG&E Energy Training Center Classes

Free classes on a range of energy-related content. In-person classes have been canceled, but classes are continuing to be offered as live webinars.

Photovoltaic (PV) Site Analysis and System Sizing

  • 9/23/2020 - 9:00 am-4:30 pm
  • The objective in this course is to assist participants in evaluating the technical feasibility of a potential PV project by presenting implementation issues that affect site selection and PV installation, while providing participants with simple tools for preliminary system size estimations. Site analysis topics will include estimation of the available solar resource, system orientation, module tilt angles, planning for shade, and evaluating space requirements and introduction to tools including the Solar Pathfinder and Solmetric SunEye for solar site analysis.
  • For more information and registration: https://pge.docebosaas.com/learn/course/external/view/webinar/557/photovoltaic-pv-site-analysis-and-system-sizing

Air Sealing and Insulating Existing Homes

International Heating and Air Conditioning Institute (IHACI) HVAC System Performance Series

  • 10/7/2020, 10/8/2020, 10/14/2020 and 10/15/2020 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
  • This four-part seminar starts with the fundamentals and theory behind residential and light commercial HVAC system performance with an overview of Quality Design (QD), Quality Installation (QI), Quality Maintenance (QM) and Quality Service (QS) as applied to the California market. The series introduces and details the "whole house" concept, outlines the instruments and field techniques required to measure HVAC system performance, and problem solves any issues discovered. Participants will receive the comprehensive skill sets required to understand and evaluate the whole HVAC system and provide the client with and HVAC system that will be safe, reliable and operate at the highest capacity and energy efficiency possible.

For more information and registration:

Lighting Fundamentals

  • This 3-class series provides a basic overview of fundamental lighting topics, including lighting terminology, vision, light and color theory, electric light sources, fixtures, controls, as well as intros to lighting calculations and codes and standards.

For more information and registration:

Sonoma Clean Power Lead Locally Seeks Qualified Contractors

SCP is providing millions of dollars in incentives and financing to SCP customers through the Lead Locally program. Visit the SCP Advanced Energy Center online or in person to see how we Lead Locally!

Become an Exclusive On-Bill Financing Contractor

  • Expanded business opportunities
  • Customers eligible for zero percent interest on-bill financing up to $10,000 (10 year term)
  • On-bill financing allows customers to install more improvements
  • Minimal close-out documentation speeds up contractor payments
  • Customers connect with you with a click of a button!

Contractors can install:

  • Heat pump space heating
  • Heat pump water heating
  • Induction cook tops
  • Phase change materials
  • And other cutting-edge energy efficiency technologies

Register for one of the Training Workshops in Advance:

Not a Participating Contractor…

In addition to great content, participating contractors have access to training, marketing materials and website listing at no-cost. To learn how you can take advantage of these benefits contact our office at (707) 565-6470 or download the  Contractor Standards and Guidelines.

Contact Information

Jane Elias

Division Manager

Energy and Sustainability Division

General Services Department

Business Hours
Monday – Friday
8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Address
La Plaza A
2300 County Center Drive
Suite A105
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.46242, -122.725426