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What’s New?

Sponsor and Utility Partner Guide Now Available
This new Guide is a reference for sponsor partners to use when
developing a new ENERGY STAR Homes program or improving an existing
program. It provides lessons learned and best practice recommendations
from successful sponsor partners across a variety of markets and conditions.
The Guide is organized into three modules, each of which addresses a key
step in developing a local or regional ENERGY STAR Homes program:
Program Design; Program Marketing and Implementation; and Program Evaluation.

The Guide is now available for download from the Partner Page
at www.energystar.gov/partners by clicking on the link for
“Utilities/Regional Energy Efficiency Program Sponsors.”

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Development of the Sponsor and Utility Partner Guide would not have been possible without the input of EPA’s partners in the industry, including a group of sponsor partners and stakeholders who contributed their time and expertise at the First Annual ENERGY STAR Residential Program Sponsor and Utility Partner Meeting in April 2007.

EVENTS & RESOURCES

Materials from the April 2007 First Annual Residential Program Sponsor
and Utility Partner Meeting
in Atlanta, Georgia, are available for download. Presentations delivered at the event, as well as other materials, can be downloaded from the Utility and Regional Energy Efficiency Program Sponsors (EEPS) Resources page at www.energystar.gov/partners by clicking on the link for "Utilities/Regional Energy Efficiency Program Sponsors" and then clicking on the link for "2007 Partner Meeting" under the header "Residential New Construction."

The New Online ENERGY STAR Partnership Agreement
Late last year, EPA introduced a new Online Partnership Agreement that makes it easier than ever to join ENERGY STAR. Organizations that recruit new builders and raters should direct prospective partners to the new online Agreement at www.energystar.gov/homesPA. While hard-copy Partnership Agreements are still available, they should only be used when completing the online form is not possible.

In addition, due to significant changes recently made to the hard-copy Partnership Agreement (including the requirement for builders to select a Home Energy Rater), EPA will no longer accept any previous versions of the Partnership Agreement. Older versions that are submitted to EPA will be returned to prospective partners with guidance on using the online Partnership Agreement or filling out the latest hard-copy Partnership Agreement. An updated hard copy of the ENERGY STAR Partnership Agreement is available upon request by e-mailing us at hotline@energystar.gov.

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Reminder: New ENERGY STAR Marketing Toolkit Now Available
ENERGY STAR recently launched a new-and-improved ENERGY STAR Marketing Toolkit that allows partners to create customized flyers, display cards, and Web tools to educate consumers about the features and benefits of ENERGY STAR certified homes. Be sure to check out what the new Toolkit has to offer.

2008 ENERGY STAR Award Applications Now Available
Each year, EPA and DOE honor organizations that have made outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. Award winners will be recognized at the ENERGY STAR Awards Ceremony on April 1, 2008 in Washington, DC, as well as other industry venues, such as RESNET’s Building Performance conference.

Note that beginning this year, the ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award for builders is being renamed the “Excellence in ENERGY STAR Promotion award.” EPA believes that this name more accurately reflects what builders winning this award are being recognized for, namely planning and implementing outstanding and innovative promotions and consumer education campaigns around ENERGY STAR. In addition, be aware that EPA will no longer have Sustained Excellence awards for builders. These builders will be recognized though the new Excellence in ENERGY STAR Promotion award as well. Other awards remain unchanged, including the Partner of the Year award for Home Energy Raters, Excellence in Affordable Housing, and Excellence in Energy Efficiency Program Delivery.

All organizations participating in ENERGY STAR are encouraged to consider applying for a 2008 ENERGY STAR Award. To be considered, an organization must meet the specific eligibility requirements in the award application and submit a completed application package postmarked by December 14, 2007. For more information, please visit www.energystar.gov/awards or contact your Account Manager with questions.

New Opportunity for Home Builder Associations To Participate with ENERGY STAR
Home Builder Associations (HBAs) are now eligible to partner with ENERGY STAR as sponsoring organizations. If you have a relationship with your local HBA, please discuss this opportunity with them to help members build energy efficient homes in your area. ENERGY STAR also can be the energy efficiency component of a HBA’s green building program. Information about eligibility and partner commitments is available at www.energystar.gov/homesPA.

Affordable Housing Update
Beginning in 2008, the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA) will require that low-income rental housing developments that are funded with PHFA funds and low-income housing tax credits earn a HERS Index score that qualifies for ENERGY STAR, have a thermal bypass inspection performed, and include ENERGY STAR qualified appliances and equipment. In previous years, the PHFA had awarded voluntary points for ENERGY STAR-related activities through its competitive funding programs.

By decreasing energy costs for both developers and residents, PHFA funding can be made available for other worthwhile purposes such as housing services, job training, education, child care, and community enhancement, thereby multiplying the efficiency benefit. To date, over 30 state housing finance agencies have incorporated ENERGY STAR-related criteria into their competitive funding programs. For more information contact Brian Ng, Affordable Housing Coordinator, at ng.brian@epa.gov.

More ENERGY STAR Affordable Housing Information Available on Web Site
ENERGY STAR offers affordable housing stakeholders a proven, turn-key solution that can be deployed via housing policies and programs to cost-effectively increase energy efficiency for low-income households. A new ENERGY STAR Affordable Housing Web page features available tools and resources for affordable housing stakeholders, success stories, information on Habitat for Humanity’s partnership with ENERGY STAR, ENERGY STAR’s recognition program for affordable housing, and summaries of available funding programs.

Thermal Bypass Checklist in Español
A Spanish version of the Thermal Bypass Checklist (Lista Para Inspección De Desvíos Termales) is now available on the ENERGY STAR Web site in the Technical Resources section. The ENERGY STAR Homes team would like to thank Justin Erickson and the team at E3 Energy in Flagstaff, AZ, for collaborating with EPA on developing this important, new resource. Stay tuned for a Spanish version of the Thermal Bypass Checklist Guide document.


ENERGY STAR Happenings

Builder Recruitment Handbook for Sponsors, Providers, and Raters Coming Soon!
Sponsors, Providers, and Home Energy Raters soon will have an additional resource for recruiting builders to the ENERGY STAR for New Homes program. The Builder Recruitment Handbook is intended to help partners learn to recruit builders using the most effective methods. A template recruitment presentation is one of several components that will be included. The Handbook is expected to be released by the end of the year.

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Outreach Partnership Application Coming in January
Each year, EPA encourages ENERGY STAR partners and supporters – including homebuilders, Home Energy Raters, and utilities – to work together and pool resources to increase consumer demand for ENERGY STAR certified homes. In markets where partners use EPA-created advertising to cooperatively promote ENERGY STAR certified homes, EPA will complement that commitment with a separate, equivalent outreach effort. Each year EPA contributes up to a specified dollar ceiling in each participating market.

If you are planning to participate in 2008, it is recommended that you start collaborating as soon as possible to ensure that builders and potential participants include the Outreach Partnership in their 2008 advertising budgets. To learn more about this opportunity, visit www.energystar.gov/homes, and click on the link for “Outreach Partnership” on the Quick Finder sidebar. Be on the lookout for the Outreach Partnership application in January.

Would You Like ENERGY STAR Builder Education in Your Area?
If you would like to host an ENERGY STAR builder event and are interested in having an ENERGY STAR representative speak or provide feedback on your planned presentation, please contact your Account Manager to determine if a representative is available to help. Speaking topics can include the features and benefits of ENERGY STAR certified homes, best practices for selling energy efficient homes, Thermal Bypass Checklist, and building science 101. When requesting a presentation, please provide the number of attendees expected, the length of the event, and what type of presentation would most benefit your audience. Please note: availability is very limited.


Reminders

Sponsors – Inform Providers in Your Region About Homes You’ve Sponsored!
If you are an ENERGY STAR utility partner or sponsoring organization, please ensure that Providers in your area indicate your organization as a sponsor when they report homes to EPA. If the Provider does not specify your organization in their report, EPA has no record of your activity as a program sponsor.

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Discontinue Use of Old ENERGY STAR Mark
In 2003, ENERGY STAR introduced the new cyan mark to replace the original program mark (shown on the right). However, the program continues to see use of the old mark in partner advertising or marketing pieces and on Web sites. To ensure consistency with the national program, please discontinue use of this old mark immediately. Use of the old ENERGY STAR mark is not permitted.

To download the new mark, please visit www.energystar.gov/marks. A user name and password are required; if you have misplaced or forgotten this information, please click on the link for “I forgot my username and password” to have them re-sent to your e-mail address, or contact the ENERGY STAR Hotline at 1-888-STAR-YES.

Listing Your Web site on the ENERGY STAR Partner Locator
Have you wondered how you can hyperlink your company’s Web site from the ENERGY STAR Partner Locator? The ENERGY STAR Web site receives 6 million visits every year – making Web linking a great, free marketing tool available to all partners. Please review the ENERGY STAR Web Linking Policy at www.energystar.gov/weblinking to determine if your company Web site meets the criteria for establishing a link. Once your Web site meets the requirements outlined in the policy, send an e-mail with your URL and company name to hotline@energystar.gov to request that a link be established.

Maintaining Your Active Partnership
To maintain active status on the ENERGY STAR Partner Locator, a partner must qualify at least one home as ENERGY STAR every 12 months. Partners not meeting this requirement are placed on an inactive status and are removed from the Partner Locator. To ensure you stay active, make sure that your ENERGY STAR certified homes are properly reported to EPA.

If your company becomes inactive, your partnership will be reactivated automatically once EPA receives a report from an accredited Home Energy Rating Provider indicating that you have built, rated, or sponsored a new ENERGY STAR certified home. Providers submit reports to EPA at the end of each quarter. You will not have to sign a new ENERGY STAR Partnership Agreement.

If you receive an e-mail that your status is inactive and you believe this is inaccurate, please work with your Home Energy Rater to ensure your certified homes have been reported. Then, send an e-mail to hotline@energystar.gov and be sure to include your company's name in the message text.

Updating Organization and Contact Information
To update organization or contact information, please visit the My ENERGY STAR Account (MESA) Web site at www.energystar.gov/mesa, and log in using your username and password. If you have misplaced or forgotten this information, please click on the link for “I forgot my username and password” to have it re-sent to your e-mail address. Please add the MESA site to your “Favorites” folder so that you can easily access the Web site from your computer.

A tutorial for using MESA is available in PDF at the log-in screen, which provides guidance on how to use MESA to update your company’s information, including how to add new contacts or remove contacts that are no longer with your company.  

Primary Account Managers for Your ENERGY STAR Questions
Whether you have a need for a technical presentation, help designing an ENERGY STAR for New Homes program, help with seminars, or with developing a sales presentation, you should contact the Primary Account Manager for your region, illustrated in the map below. These Account Managers field all requests for regional support, connecting you with the ENERGY STAR team member best suited to meet your needs. Contact information for these regional Account Managers is provided below.

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Erin Trager

Phone: (703) 934-3053
Fax: (703) 934-3530
etrager@icfi.com

States: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and West Virginia

 

Stacey Patmore

Phone: (202) 343-9407
Fax: (202) 343-2200
patmore.stacey@epa.gov

States: Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming

This newsletter will be archived online and available at www.energystar.gov/homes.


©2007 New Homes with ENERGY STAR®. All Rights Reserved.