Since implementing a program to encourage energy efficiency in homes, the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities has given out more than $73,000 in rebates to electric customers who purchase Energy Star compliant appliances, thermostats, dehumidifiers, heat pumps, electric water heaters and air-conditioning units.
''We have simply had an overwhelming response,'' said Tammy Anderson, an assistant customer service supervisor at the BPU. ''Since we began the program last October, we've given away $1,830 per week in rebates. The program is running very smoothly, even though we've had to do a lot of legwork with some of the submissions. We're getting very positive responses from our customers, though.''
The amount of rebates the BPU has given out is nearing the $75,000 the BPU budgeted for the program. Income generated by a small rate increase - one-tenth of a cent per kilowatt hour - the BPU implemented in April will be put toward the program.
As of the end of July, Mrs. Anderson said the BPU has given out $24,225 in rebates on residential windows. Through the end of July, the BPU has given out rebates - $25 per window - on 969 windows, she said.
''A lot of window rebates have come in,'' she said. ''People have really been doing a lot of remodeling this summer. We've also gotten a lot of rebate requests for window air-conditioning units.''
The BPU has, through the end of July, provided $20,100 worth of rebates on 201 washing machines; $17,850 in rebates on 179 refrigerators; $7,100 in rebates on 142 dishwashers; $1,680 in rebates on 56 dehumidifiers; $1,450 on 29 window air-conditioning units; $343 in rebates on three central air-conditioning units and $420 on 42 programmable thermostats.
''This has been a very successful program,'' said Dan Reynolds, BPU energy efficiency coordinator. ''We will be sitting down in the very near future to take a look at what's working, what's not working, what we can add as far as the things we're giving rebates out for, and what we can afford to add.''
The Energy Star Rebate program will run through Dec. 31.
Other energy efficiency programs are also proving popular, Reynolds said. Last month, the BPU implemented programs for industrial and commercial customers, along with a new residential home energy audit program.
The new Small Commercial Lighting and Motors Program has generated ''a lot of interest,'' Reynolds said. He said 12 customers have expressed interest and he has conducted pre-inspections on about half of those customers, who are now going ahead with making improvements. Rebates applied for through the program have ranged between $1,000 and $7,500.
Reynolds also said 19 homeowners have applied for residential home energy audits. Three have been completed and others are set for completion.