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Rebates Available for Energy Saving Residents

Oct. 4, 2004 – The V.I. Energy Office is getting ready to once again give rebates to residents who buy energy saving devices, spokesman Jamal Nielsen said Monday.
Before buyers can get rebates on purchases there have to first be vendors. Anyone who wants to be certified as a vendor by the Energy Office is invited to a meeting to be held Oct. 13 on St. Thomas or Oct. 14 on St. Croix. Times have yet to be set, but call Leila Muller, program monitor, for information.
The St. Thomas meeting is at the Curriculum Center. The St. Croix meeting is tentatively scheduled for the Planning and Natural Resources Department's conference room at 45 Mars Hill in Frederiksted.
Nielsen said he expects the rebate program to be in full swing on Oct. 18. This means residents will again get rebates for buying energy-efficient items from local vendors. The items must be manufactured in the United States.
The Energy Office's previous rebate program ended in 2003.
"It ran out of money," Nielsen said.
At the time, then director Victor Somme said that, particularly in St. John, off-island residents building vacation villas received rebates for installing energy efficient equipment. Somme said some of the checks were in the $25,000 to $30,000 range.
Additionally, boaters who were not V. I. residents bought equipment here, received their rebates, and then sailed away. Somme also said some people purchased equipment under the V. I. energy rebate program, but shipped it off island.
Somme said the program was intended for local residents.
The rebate program will provide rebates on a list of items. It will pay $5 per watt on photovoltaic panels up to 10 panels per residence.
Solar water heaters are also eligible. Those holding from 66 to 120 gallons generate a rebate of $1,000. Those holding from 40 to 65 gallons get a $700 rebate, and those 39 gallons or less have a rebate of 20 percent off the retail cost.
Wind turbine generators have a rebate of 20 percent off retail cost.
If you buy a trace inverter in conjunction with solar panels or a wind turbine generator, you'll get a rebate of 15 percent off the retail cost.
Residential users can get a $5-off coupon to buy a three-pack of energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs. There is a limit of five coupons.
If you buy an electric water heater timer, you can get a rebate of 25 percent off the purchase price.
Muller can be contacted at 773-1082, ext. 2201 or by visiting the Frederiksted office.
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