Incentive programs make it easier for community to save in more ways than one

Incentive Programs

Words by Nichole Zangara / Environment

The Town of Mountain Village is investing over $170,000 in community incentive programs focused on the environment. The reason for doing so is simple and two-fold: Mountain Village wants to give its community members the power to make a difference and it’s much easier to make a larger impact together than alone.

“We prefer to reward folks for doing the right thing rather than regulating them into compliance,” said Environmental Services Director Deanna Drew. “Our incentive programs are a fun way to educate the community about our environment, and then engage them with meaningful actions to protect our outdoors and conserve our natural resources.”

All told, five of the six programs will launch on or around Memorial Day Weekend and are part of the town’s larger ethos of protecting the environment outside of its 3.27 square mile radius.

“What we do here extends way beyond Mountain Village Boulevard,” said Nichole Zangara Riley, director of marketing and business development. “We know these programs are teaching our community that small changes can have a large impact, which is why we’ve continued with three tried-and-true incentive programs and added three new ones for 2016. With all of this, we’ve also been able to partner with key organizations that are also changing the environmental landscape for the better and want to connect with our community to make it more sustainable. This is about going at this together in order to move the needle in the right direction.”

The following is a list of 2016 Mountain Village incentive programs and their associated launch dates. With the exception of Relight Mountain Village, all programs are open until funds are exhausted.

Heat Trace Incentive Program
Launch May 27, 2016 | $12,000 Funding
Mountain Village wants its residents to take control of their roof and gutter heat trace system. So the town is funding this new incentive program aimed at improving the safety and efficiency of heat trace systems commonly applied on roofs and gutters by offering a free system controller valued at $380. To take advantage of this free offering, Mountain Village residents will need to follow a few steps, which are totally worth it: using an estimated 25 amps and 230 volts supplying a heat trace system on a home without controls from November to March may cost a resident approximately $2,277 per zone. With the use of controls and a properly installed system, a resident may save 30- to 50-percent of their electricity costs per winter.

Solar Energy Incentive Program
Launch May 27, 2016 | $12,500 Funding
The Solar Energy Incentive Program is another creative way that Mountain Village encourages the responsible use of natural resources throughout the community. With that, the town is offering significant savings to those who install solar on their home or business. First launched in 2014, the Solar Energy Incentive Program offers a rebate of $0.40 per watt of installed power generated by the sun. This is in addition to San Miguel Power Association’s current rebate of $0.75 per watt and the current federal tax credit of 30 percent.

Noxious Weed Control Incentive Program
Launch May 27, 2016 | $7,500 Funding
Controlling noxious weeds in a high alpine environment takes the entire community’s support and due diligence. In 2015, the town distributed $10,000 in noxious weed control rebates to over 50 properties. For 2016, Mountain Village was awarded another $7,500 grant from Colorado Department of Agriculture’s Noxious Weed Management Fund to incentivize Mountain Village property owners to manage noxious weeds on their properties. Property owners who professionally treat noxious weeds on their property are reimbursed 25 percent of their total bill, up to a maximum rebate amount of $250 per property.

Relight Mountain Village Incentive Program
Launch June 1, 2016 | $20,000 Funding
For the third year, Mountain Village is offering its residents and business owners an opportunity to save money and energy by switching from inefficient light bulbs to new light-emitting diode technology (LEDs). In partnership with San Miguel Power Association (SMPA) and Cooperative Business Lighting Partners, the Relight Mountain Village Incentive Program provides instant rebates and exclusive offers to those who purchase up to 50 LEDs at greenlivingtown.com. The 2016 online order period begins June 1 and will run until midnight July 31. Program participants can expect to save up to 75 percent for each LED bulb they purchase. In an effort to reduce waste, bulbs are delivered in bulk and available for pickup at Town Hall Plaza. Customers will be contacted via email regarding the specific date and time for this pickup event. Commercial businesses may participate in this program by first contacting SMPA’s Key Accounts Executive Paul Hora at phora@smpa.coop.

Wildfire Mitigation Incentive Program
Launch June 3, 2016 | $100,000 Funding
Mountain Village wants to help its residents create defensible space on their property in order to lower their wildfire risk. So the town, in partnership with the Telluride Fire Protection District, created the Wildfire Mitigation Incentive Program with Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association and the West Region Wildfire Council as funding partners. Through this program, every homeowner received a postcard and a unique personalized website that informed them of their property’s wildfire risk rating using a variety of site data.

To learn more, Mountain Village will host the Wildfire Mitigation Forum June 3 beginning at 10 a.m. in Mountain Village Town Hall. At this forum, residents can learn about the risk of wildfire from experts and then sign up for a home site visit with the town’s forester and a wildfire mitigation specialist in order to learn how one can reduce their individual wildfire rating risk by creating defensible space. Mountain Village will reimburse a property owner 50 percent of their total defensible space project cost up to $5,000 per property. This program is for existing Mountain Village homes, not new home construction.

Smart Water Controls Incentive Program
Launch August 2016 | $20,000 Funding
Mountain Village’s newest program for 2016 intends to educate the community about ways to prevent water loss, both inside and outside the home, and will encourage property owners to install devices on their water systems to eliminate water waste and conserve. The Smart Water Controls Incentive Program will reimburse the homeowner’s full cost of an Environmental Protection Agency-approved WaterSense irrigation controller installed on lawn irrigation systems. These smart controllers use real-time local weather data, including humidity, wind speed, solar radiation and rainfall, to calculate evapotranspiration rates and automatically adjust irrigation watering accordingly. All residential properties in Mountain Village, West Meadows and Ski Ranches are eligible for this program, and the town will reimburse the homeowner for all controllers needed to serve the entire property.

For more information about each incentive program, visit townofmountainvillage.com/green-living/incentive-programs.