This Program In a Box suggests ways that State Energy Offices can leverage federal funding to develop a program where public entities can share the expertise of energy facilities managers to reduce waste and optimize energy consumption in public buildings.

Benefits for States that Implement a Shared Energy Facilities Manager (SEFM) Program

  • Significantly reducing operating costs of public buildings can free up a jurisdiction’s resources to enable better focus on its mission and priorities. Examples of efficiency improvements include:
    • LED lighting upgrades
    • HVAC upgrades and optimization
    • Installation of geothermal heating and cooling systems
    • Increased insulation and air sealing
    • Measures to achieve ENERGY STAR certification
  • Sharing an energy facilities manager with other jurisdictions can increase technical assistance and build a peer-to-peer support network.  
  • For school districts, a shared manager can increase community engagement and educational opportunities on energy awareness.

How Communities Benefit from State Energy Offices Providing Funds for SEFM

  • Training and professional development for energy facilities professionals helps communities with little experience in this technical field.  
  • State Energy Offices can assist with grant administration, and on compliance with state and federal contracting rules.
  • A statewide association or agency can organize jurisdictions into regional groupings to share the services of a single energy facilities manager.
  • By providing one-time resources, State Energy Offices can demonstrate the value and illustrate the payback of retaining a permanent energy facilities manager.

Example Used to Develop This Program In a Box

Thank you to the Kentucky energy and education professionals who generously provided their knowledge and experience for this Shared Energy Facilities Manager Program In a Box.

See a case study of the Kentucky program.

In 2008, the Kentucky State Legislature passed a law requiring all education boards to adopt energy management policies. In response, the Kentucky School Board Association (KSBA) and the Kentucky Department for Energy Development used $5 million in State Energy Program (SEP) funds allocated for Kentucky under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to establish the Shared Energy Manager Program (SEMP). At program launch, 49 energy managers were hired to assist 144 school districts statewide.

Federal funding for SEMP ran out in 2012. The program’s success spurred its administrators to establish partnerships with two utilities to continue funding until 2018. This extended program continued with 97 districts and 59 energy facilities managers. Resulting energy savings totaled $225 million and ENERGY STAR certification of 455 school buildings.

If you are interested in learning more about the Kentucky SEMP, please contact E4TheFuture at policy@e4thefuture.org.

Note: Documents from other states with similar programs are included, to supplement primary source material.