November 2012 Newsletter


November, 2012 Volume 4, Issue 10

The Weatherization PLUS Newsletter

Economic Opportunity Studies, Inc.  |

Top Story

Finding the Right Leveraging Tools is Now Easier

Economic Opportunity Studies’ Find the Right Tools is a new section of our website with finding aids to help you choose from a variety of resources to improve your leveraging initiatives.

We recognize that the Leveraging Project has created and stored such a huge number of resources for a variety of different situations, that it can be hard to find the material most relevant for your needs. That’s why we’ve created the new finding aid: topical toolkits that contain similar resources in one place.

For example, our Acquiring Financing toolkit can link you to the different forms of financing used by weatherizers. Working on securing utility support? Open the Winning Utility Investments tool box for issue papers, model reports, and testimony and templates.

Of course, every situation is different; that is why our project staff is available to help you figure out which information or tool is needed for your initiative. E-mail us here or call us at 202-628-4900.

Tell us what you think on Twitter and Facebook, and check back frequently for more tools and resources.

Satisfying Peer Exchange Addressed Multi-Family Housing Dilemmas (at the NCAF Energy Conference)

Join a similar session (free & online) soon!

At the October NCAF Energy Leveraging and Community Economic Development Conference, Madiana Mustapha of EOS facilitated an interactive Multi-family Homes Brainstorm Session. The agenda was whatever participants’ issues and concerns about serving the multi-family housing market dictated.  The process was that three experienced multi-family weatherizers offered their best thinking on the issues raised and then all others offered ideas and/or related concerns.

Those participants decided to talk about the following barriers and lessons learned in multi-family WAP, especially as they translate into winning new fee-for-service work in this market:

  • How did the subcontracting process differ from conventional WAP? What were the best procedures and criteria tried out?
  • What health and safety work was needed in M-F buildings and what new approaches must be taken compared to single family solutions?  What does employing health and safety measures cost? Is the workforce adequately trained and financially prepared?
  • What was the experience in recruiting multi-family property owners who do not pay utility bills? What has been learned that would help Weatherizers market a fee-for-service project to such a building owner?

What are YOUR issues? If your agency weatherized multi-family Buildings during ARRA please take our survey [see the link in the right hand column] to help us tailor our resources to the issues that will come up in the post-ARRA program.

Wishing you had been there? : Participants encouraged us to offer more such sessions. Accordingly, EOS will offer several free Multi-family Building Brainstorm sessions via GoToMeeting conference calls. To recapture the intimacy and trust of the ‘live’ session, each will be limited to 15 participants and 2 to 3 experienced experts from WAP agencies per meeting.  We will offer several dates as soon as we line up those experts. So whether you are novice or experienced, consider joining the Brainstorm sessions to either learn more or share your knowledge.

Please send us your contact info by clicking here if you would like notification of upcoming sessions.

NCAF Conference Focuses on the Future

On October 22 – 25, NCAF hosted the 2012 Energy and Community Economic Development Conference in St. Petersburg, Florida. Visionary plenary speakers and workshops led by experienced and strategic thinkers all focused on developing new opportunities and partnerships for the Weatherization and Community Action network.  NCAF will soon post the presentations at EOS sponsored five presenters and their sessions. Stay tuned for notice of when these will be offered as on-line live sessions for all who could not make it to St. Pete.


Home Energy Pros: A New Way to Interact with Peers

Attendees at the recent NCAF Energy & CED conference learned about a useful online professional network for weatherizers. Tom White, publisher of Home Energy magazine, demonstrated the Home Energy Pros interactive website built for the residential energy efficiency community. Once you become a subscriber/member (it’s free), this online platform offers multiple avenues to sharing with your communities of interest; 48 groups welcome members to post about topics that range from the highly technical (Wrightsoft-Manual J/Manual D) to the more business-oriented (Marketing Energy Efficiency), and the ‘general’ forum is truly busy.

You can:

– Follow colleagues’ blogs.

– Or even better, create your own with the easy to use Home Energy Pros blog platform. Just sign in into the main site and click on the ‘blogs’ tab, then follow the easy template.

– Post your significant upcoming events and view those posted by others.

– Make it yours: Although this website is helpful in assisting members of the home performance community, Tom White points out that there is ample opportunity for members of the Weatherization community to use Home Energy Pros as a robust tool for Community Action and mobilization by initiating blogs or groups that focus on policy and resources. How about a social enterprise group? A ‘green pathways out of poverty’ community? A futures planning group?

Navigating is seamless; a handy tag list features many topics of interest and tabs allow users to stay current with ‘featured’, ‘latest’ and ‘most popular’  lists.  All of the group and blog postings are archived under date tabs, and the search function is snappy. Join the EOS staff – we are already exploring, learning and enjoying the camaraderie at Home Energy Pros.

Home Energy Professional Update

BPI announced yesterday that due to high demand for the free subsidy exams for the Retrofit Installer and Crew Leader certifications a deadline has been established for workers to submit an application.  An application for either exam must be received by BPI no later than December 14, 2012.  In an effort to assist in the messaging of this offer, and to ensure more comprehensive network coverage, we have added a page to our website that provides links and information related to this offer.  Readers will have the opportunity view our recruitment letter targeted to agencies that are within 100 miles of an approved BPI subsidy testing center.


Last Month’s Survey Results: The Future of WAP

Thank you to the 60 readers who responded to last month’s survey on the topic of the Weatherization Program changes described by the DOE. Here are the results of that survey. They suggest we need more ideas about how to change WAP for a post-ARRA future. Nevertheless, few weeks remain before DOE needs to distributed 2013 guidance.

Question 1: Should states be required to spend WAP funds on leveraging activities? To have a leveraging plan?

YES – 48.1% NO – 51.9%

Question 2: Should program eligibility drop to 150% of the poverty threshold (from 200%)?

YES – 41.5% NO – 58.5%

Question 3: Should the Department of Energy raise the SIR from 1.0 to 1.5?

YES – 38.9% NO – 61.1%

Question 4: Should legislation reduce the state per unit average spent from $6,500 to much less?

YES – 28.3% NO – 71.7%

The Newsletter of Economic Opportunity Studies’ Weatherization PLUS Leveraging Partnership Project brings timely information about developments that expand the Weatherization Assistance Program to help your organization take advantage of emerging opportunities. Visit the Weatherization PLUS portal for more information.

Why You Are Receiving This Email
Your name is on a list of federal and state Weatherization Program contacts from W.A.P. conference attendance records. Of course, you may unsubscribe (see below). However, we hope you will help us add the names and addresses of all who may be interested. Our promise: 1) We do not share our list, and, 2) The newsletter will be sent only when there is useful material for weatherizers.

Specific questions? Opinions? Subjects we should cover in the future? Email us at:

In This Issue:

» New Leveraging Toolkits
» Multi-Family Brainstorming
» NCAF Conference Report
» Home Energy Pros Community
» Certification Test Subsidies

Leveraging Toolkits are here!

Click on the wrench to get started!


Multi-Family Weatherization Survey

Click here to take our survey and tell us how you’ll work with multi-family units in a post-ARRA envrionment.



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Our Project Staff:

Meg Power
Project Manager

Fred Stratton
Project Coordinator

Madiana Mustapha
Project Coordinator

Levi Juhl
Operations Coordinator

Leah Burcat
Legal Intern

Disclaimer: "This report was prepared as an account of work sponsored by an agency of the United States Government. Neither the United States Government nor any agency thereof, nor any of their employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the United States Government or any agency thereof. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government or any agency thereof."

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