School Facilities - 2013–2015 Energy Efficiency Grants
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School Facilities

2013–2015 Energy Efficiency Grants

The Legislature has appropriated $7 million dollars in the 2013–15 capital budget for a new round of energy efficiency grants for K–12 school facilities. OSPI will administer the grants. There is $2 million remaining from previous appropriations. The new round will award $9 million in grants up to $500,000 per district. Every district may submit one application and may receive one grant award. The funds will be granted in one round.

Application Results and Next Steps

OSPI’s review and scoring of 50 school district applications is complete. The 29 preliminary awards will result in over $38 million dollars of energy improvements to districts across the state.

This page is the main source of information for the grant application and award process.




Wednesday, October 2, 2013
9:00—10:00 a.m.

K-20 Network Information Session for Districts, Consultants and Project Managers
OSPI and DES provided an overview of the 2013-15 grant program followed by a questions and answers session. Access recording here

Beginning October 14, 2013

Intent to Apply
Districts may submit the required Intent to Apply document(s). Districts may include the Predetermined Cost Effectiveness Criteria in the Board Resolution or provide it in a separate document. Send Intent to Apply to

Monday, November 11, 2013

On-line Application Opens
Grant application is available in iGrants Form Package 492, Fiscal Year 13–14.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014 no later than 5:00 p.m.

Application Due Date
Applications are due to OSPI in iGrants, including all uploaded supporting documents. Applications can be submitted any day up until this due date.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Grant Awards Announced


Highlights of the New Program

  • Nine million dollars are available for energy grant awards.
  • Applications will be submitted in iGrants, form package 492, fiscal year 13–14.
  • Grants are for projects using the energy savings performance contracting method or an alternate method. All projects must follow Department of Enterprise Services (DES) Energy Program’s Energy Savings Performance Contracting Guidelines for Public Agencies in Washington State. Refer to Appendix Two for alternate method project requirements.
  • A district may only submit one application and receive one grant award of no more than $500,000.
  • An “Intent to Apply” must be submitted to OSPI as early as possible in the process.
  • An Investment Grade Audit (IGA) must be completed prior to submitting an application. An IGA completed in 2010, but not in preceding years, is acceptable ONLY if the district, and their ESCO or engineer, confirm that the conditions in the buildings have not changed AND the project cost section(s) have been updated.
  • Districts using DES must submit the final IGA to the DES project manager for review and comment prior to completing the application process. The IGA from districts using an alternate method will be reviewed and commented on by a third-party reviewer prior to scoring the application.
  • A pre-scoring review of all application packages will take place.
  • A scoring team will be convened to review all of the applications and scoring.
  • Energy operational cost savings (avoided routine maintenance, repair, replacement costs) will not be considered on this application.
  • State-wide average energy prices by energy type will be applied to all applications for leverage and simple payback calculation.
  • Persistence, or measurement and verification, is a requisite. A measurement and verification plan is required as part of the application package in order for the project to be scored and considered for a grant.
  • The grant scoring criteria is established by the Legislature. The application of the criteria is developed by OSPI staff and project stakeholders. The five categories, in weight and priority order are:
    1. Leverage Ratio.
      The higher the leverage ratio of non-state energy grant funds (annual energy savings, committed incentives, local contribution) to the state energy grant request the higher the project ranking. The leverage ratio goal established by the legislature is 3:1. There are no point benefits leveraging beyond 3:1.
    2. Energy Savings.
      The higher the percentage of baseline energy savings, by facility, the higher the project ranking.
    3. Simple Payback.
      Projects with a simple payback, not to exceed the useful life of the project measures, will rank higher. The Useful Life Schedule for Energy Efficient Projects, approved on May 24, 2010 by the Office of Financial Management (OFM), is the basis for point calculation. In addition, OSPI has established useful life for measures that are not included on the OFM document and are likely to be included in energy grant projects. Those include useful life for solar PV, VRF, LED lighting, retro commissioning, CO2 and occupancy sensors, dehumidification systems.
    4. Prior Grant Award.
      Priority consideration shall be given to applicants that did not receive grant awards from appropriations provided in section 5011, ESHB 2020 (11–13 State Capitol Budget) and section 601, ESHB 5127 (2012 State Supplemental Budget).
    5. Project Approach and Merit.
      Applications will be evaluated based on overall quality of the project including, but not limited to, strategic approach and specific project goals, project timeline, project benefits and expected outcomes.

Application Process

Step 1: Intent to Apply

Prior to submitting an application, districts must submit an “Intent to Apply” to OSPI. The Intent to Apply must include:

  1. A Resolution by the Board. Indicate the intention to proceed with the application and the project if awarded the grant. The Resolution acknowledges that an Investment Grade Audit must be completed prior to application. The pre-determined cost effectiveness criteria may be included in the resolution. Sample Board Resolution
  2. The Board’s Pre-determined Cost Effectiveness Criteria (if not included in the Board Resolution). See Sample Pre-determined Cost Effectiveness Criteria

The Intent to Apply should be developed as early as possible in the project planning phase. Send the Intent to Apply to

Step 2: iGrants Application Form Package 492

The grant application has been revised from previous rounds. A PDF version of the iGrants application is available for information only.  This document was revised on 12/16/13.

The terms by facility and by building are used in the grant application.

  • Facility means school.
  • Building means individual building on a facility/school campus as defined in ICOS.
Download a graphic representation of district, facility, building and area (PDF).

District applications must be submitted in iGrants Form Package 492, fiscal year 13-14. Districts are encouraged to print a copy of the application to review all the required fields well in advance of completing the application in iGrants. Please remember to allow enough time after completing the application to have your grant contract administrator approve the application. This is an internal step that must be done before the application is sent to OSPI.

The iGrants district manual has been recently updated and is available on the iGrants website.

Grant Communications

Please direct all correspondence to: Nancy Johns, Coordinator; School Facilities and Organization; P.O. Box 47200; Olympia, WA 98504-7200. You can also contact Nancy by calling (360) 725-4973 or email The application process is accessed through the OSPI iGrants Form Package 492, fiscal year 13-14.

Guidelines — Acceptable Project Contracting Methods

Grants will be awarded for projects using the Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) method or an alternate method of evaluating and delivering energy saving improvements. All projects will follow the Energy Savings Performance Contracting Guidelines for Public Agencies in Washington State.

Projects that use an alternate method must:

  1. Verify energy and operational cost savings for ten years or until the energy and operational cost savings pay for the project, whichever is shorter.
  2. Follow the Department of Enterprise Services Energy Savings Performance Contracting Guidelines in Appendix Two.
  3. Employ a licensed engineer for the energy audit, design, and construction. The energy consultant selection for the energy audit will include a licensed engineer that is a certified energy manager.
  4. May require third-party verification of performance.

A two-page “nutshell” guideline of the Alternate Method for Energy Efficiency Projects is available as a guide for districts not using the ESPC method.

Questions and Answers

Frequently asked Questions and Answers will be updated on a weekly basis throughout the grant timeline.

Nancy Johns, Coordinator, High Performance Schools
School Facilities and Organization, OSPI
(360) 725-4973


   Updated 4/1/2014

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