New $225 Air Conditioning Rebates and Level Pay Programs Will Help Customers Stay Safe and Cool During Extreme Heat
September 16, 2022 (LOS ANGELES)—Mayor Eric Garcetti joined Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) Board President Cynthia McClain-Hill, LADWP General Manager and Chief Engineer Martin Adams, environmental justice and community advocates Pacoima Beautiful, along with local LADWP customers today to launch LADWP’s “Cool LA” initiative. The event was held at the Mid-Valley Senior Center in Panorama City, which serves area seniors and is one of the city’s cooling centers during times of extreme heat. “Cool LA” will provide older adults, income-restricted, and medically-vulnerable LADWP customers, rebates of $225 to purchase room air conditioners to help keep them safe during extreme heat storms. LADWP also announced a new level-pay billing program that will allow all customers to spread their utility bills out evenly, over a twelve-month period.
“The impacts of the climate emergency are on our doorstep, and as we continue our work to make Los Angeles a carbon-neutral city, we can’t wait to bring solutions to people on the front lines of this crisis today,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Cool LA will bring needed relief from the heat to over a quarter million of our most vulnerable Angelenos – and is the latest step in our work to ensure communities bearing the brunt of climate change get immediate support.”
“Countless Angelenos often put their own health and safety at risk by keeping their AC units off during dangerous heat conditions, because of the fear they won’t be able to pay their electric bills if they run their AC. What’s even more shameful is that some of the most at-risk members of our city can’t even afford to own air conditioners,” said Cynthia McClain-Hill, President of the Board of Water and Power Commissioners. “We need to act now to help out all Angelenos by giving the most vulnerable an option to stay cool, while removing the stress of paying summer utility bills.”
The two hallmarks of the “Cool LA” initiative are an increase from $75 to $225 for room air conditioners for income-eligible customers as well as the new “Level Pay” program open to all LADWP customers. Level Pay “smooths out” a customer’s utility bill into an even, set, monthly amount, calculated based on the customers’ historical usage, helping customers to better budget for their utility bills.
“Through Cool LA, LADWP is committed to providing the relief from extreme heat that our communities need AND deserve, no matter their income, zip code, age or health,” said Martin L. Adams, LADWP General Manager and Chief Engineer. “With the implementation of Level Pay and the tripling of our AC rebate, we’ll be able to better support our most at-risk customers.”
LADWP will also be partnering with community-based organizations including Pacoima Beautiful to raise awareness about “Cool LA” and spur program participation.
“As an environmental justice organization, Pacoima Beautiful has worked closely with the City and LADWP for many years now on a variety of programs. With extreme climate conditions the way they are, it’s great to be able to offer relief to residents with a tripling of the AC rebates and the level payment program. Now, members of our community can better afford to buy ACs and feel more comfortable running their units without the worry of how they will pay their electric bill when it comes in,” said Veronica Padilla-Campos, Executive Director of Pacoima Beautiful.
Through “Cool LA,” income-eligible LADWP customers will receive a rebate of $225 on the purchase of up to two window, wall, and portable air conditioners through LADWP’s Cool LA Efficient Product Marketplace by visiting www.ladwp.com/Cool-LA.
To receive the “Cool LA” $225 air conditioner rebate requires customers to be current participants in one of the following programs: EZ-SAVE Program, Senior Citizen/Disability Lifeline Program, Physician Certified Allowance Discount, and Life-Support Equipment Discount. All other LADWP customers are eligible for a $75 rebate for room air conditioners and other energy-efficient product rebates available through LADWP’s Efficient Product Marketplace https://Marketplace.ladwp.com
Level Pay is the other new Cool LA program designed to help customers better budget for their utility bills during the hotter months. Level Pay flattens (levels out) bill fluctuations by offering customers a monthly recurring amount based on an average of past usage and costs. The plan makes available payment terms of 12, 24 and 36 months. The plan also factors in any existing arrears and incorporates them over future payments.
The Board of Water and Power Commissioners is tackling big policy issues like transitioning to 100% carbon-free energy to combat climate change. This involves many longer-term solutions. But too often, these programs only benefit those who have the means to afford improvements like a transition to solar and the purchase of an electric vehicle. LADWP is committed to taking action now to help out all Angelenos by giving the most vulnerable an option to stay cool, while removing the stress of paying summer utility bills. “Cool LA” marks an important first step in the department’s efforts to make possible an equitable transition to a clean energy future for all of LA.
Along with the rebate program and Level Pay, “Cool LA” includes these LADWP programs: Efficient Product Marketplace, Comprehensive Affordable Multifamily Retrofits program, Home Energy Improvement Program, Consumer Rebate Program, AC Optimization Program, and Power Savers Program. Additional information on the “Cool LA” initiative is available at www.ladwp.com/Cool-LA.
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