Rhode Island Public Benefit Funds for Energy Efficiency
Rhode Island's Utility Restructuring Act of 1996 states that costs for low-income assistance and weatherization programs "shall be included in the distribution rates charged to all other customers" and orders the Public Utility Commission to set up a "demand-side management" program in 1997 using the 2.3 mil per kWh specified in the bill.
In a November 2008 Settlement of Parties, the Commission approved to increase the 2.3 mils per kWh charge that funds National Grid’s (NGrid) eight electric DSM programs to 3.2 mils per kWh. The Commission also approved NGrid’s plan to continue five gas DSM programs funded through a $0.15 per decatherm charge for 2009.
The Commission annually reviews the design and implementation of NGrid’s proposed DSM programs. For 2010, all parties agreed to continue the residential programs that were approved for 2009 with a budget of $3.6 million for low-income electric programs and $368,000 for low-income gas programs.