Author: arein

Designee Registration Follow Up Questions from October 23, 2020 Webinar

The following questions were asked during the October 23, 2020 webinar for the new Designee registration functionality in the ABP portal and are answered below:

  • What prompted this change (requirement for Designees to register with the Program)?
    • Section 6.9.1 of the Revised Long-Term Plan published by the IPA on April 20, 2020, describes a new requirement for Approved Vendor Designees (i.e., third-party entities working with Approved Vendors that have direct interaction with end-use customers) to register and be listed on the ABP and Illinois Shines websites along with identifying the Approved Vendors with which they are working. The purpose of this new requirement is to increase transparency: potential customers will be able to verify that a company contacting that customer is indeed registered with the Program and be able to review if that company is listed in the Program’s consumer complaint database or the disciplinary actions report. All Designees will be added to the Program’s publicly facing Designee database once registered. This database will be housed on both the ABP and Illinois Shines websites for easy access.
  • Do installers of community solar have to register as designees (since they aren’t consumer-facing)?
    • No, because community solar installers do not have direct interaction with end-use customers they are not required to register as a Designee with the Program.
  • Who needs to register as an Approved Vendor Designee?
    • Every third-party entity that has direct interaction with end-use customers needs to register as a Designee. This includes:
      • DG Installers
      • Marketing firms
      • Lead generators
      • Sales organizations
  • Do third party companies working with Approved Vendors under Illinois Solar for All need to register as an Approved Vendor Designee?
    • Illinois Solar for All has a process for registering third-party entities that have direct interaction with end-use customers as ILSFA Aggregator Designees and subcontractors. More information about registering with Illinois Solar for All can be found here. ILSFA Aggregator Designees and subcontractors are not required to register as ABP Approved Vendor Designees.
  • If our company is an Approved Vendor but also operates as an Approved Vendor Designee for other Approved Vendors, do we need to submit an Approved Vendor Designee Registration?
    • If your company operates as a Designee but is also an Approved Vendor, you must also register as a Designee and identify those Approved Vendors or Designees with which you work.
  • Are Approved Vendor Designee registrations required at the company level or user level?
    • One account from each entity registering as a Designee is required. It is not required for all employees (or, in the case of sales personnel operating as independent contractors, each independent contractor) of the Designee to have their own Designee accounts.  The Program Administrator encourages Designees to only have one Designee account at the company level with an appointed person that is the contact for this Designee account on file with the Program.
  • What is a nested Designee?
    • A nested Designee is a Designee’s Designee (Approved Vendor > Approved Vendor Designee > Nested Designee), as opposed to an Approved Vendor Designee. All nested Designees that have direct interaction with end-use customers are required to register as Designees with the Program.
  • Where can I find the presentation slides and the webinar recording from the October 23rd training webinar?
    • These materials were sent out via email on Friday, October 23, 2020 and can also be found here:
    • What is the deadline for existing Designees to register with the Program?
      • New Designees must register prior to working with any Approved Vendor. Existing designees must register by Thursday, December 10, 2020 (which is 45 calendar days from the October 26, 2020 release of the Designee Registration functionality) to remain in compliance with Program requirements.
    • Our company is already linked to an Approved Vendor account as their Designee, do I still need to register as an Approved Vendor Designee?
      • Yes, all third-party entities that have direct interaction with end-use customers need to submit a registration using the new registration functionality, even if your company has already been operating as a Designee for an Approved Vendor in the Program. If your company is not registered as an Approved Vendor Designee by December 10, 2020, it will not be able to access functionality in the ABP portal.

If you have any further questions on this new Program requirement, please reach out to the Program Administrator at admin@illinoisabp.com or (877) 783-1820.

Request for Stakeholder Comments – Second Draft of the Refreshed ABP REC Contract

The Illinois Power Agency is seeking feedback on the second draft of the refreshed Adjustable Block Program REC contract with comments due by September 18, 2020. The second draft of the refreshed REC contract, a comparison of the second draft of the refreshed REC contract and the first draft of the refreshed REC Contract, and a Request for Stakeholder Comments document can be found at www.illinoisabp.com/rec-contract. Please see the Request for Stakeholder Comments for additional background and information, and details on a virtual workshop scheduled for Friday, September 11, 2020 at 10:00 AM Central Standard Time.

Request for Stakeholder Comments – Refreshed ABP REC Contract

The Illinois Power Agency is seeking feedback on the first draft of the refreshed Adjustable Block Program REC contract with comments due by August 14, 2020. The draft REC contract, a comparison of the draft REC contract and the current REC Contract, and a Request for Stakeholder Comments document can be found at www.illinoisabp.com/rec-contract. Please see the Request for Stakeholder Comments for additional background and information, and details on two virtual workshops scheduled for July 31, 2020 and August 7, 2020, both at 12:00 PM Central Standard Time.

Extension of deadlines for ABP requests for comments

In light of delays caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Illinois Power Agency is extending the deadline for feedback on the Adjustable Block Program’s Draft Marketing Guidelines and Community Solar Disclosure Form and REC contract. The new deadlines are now April 28 for feedback on the Draft Marketing Guidelines and Community Solar Disclosure Form and May 12 for feedback on the refreshed REC contract. Additionally, in comments, the Agency strongly encourages feedback and perspective from individual companies and organizations (and not merely joint comments).

The Revised Long-Term Plan set the goal of issuing revised marketing guidelines within 90 days of the Illinois Commerce Commission’s approval of the Revised Plan (i.e., by May 18th).  Due to the extension of time for stakeholder feedback, that date for finalization may be extended.

Request for comments on ABP application batching process

As a result of the ICC’s approval of the IPA’s Revised Long-Term Plan on February 18, 2020, changes to the Adjustable Block Program application batching process are required. The Program Administrator seeks feedback on options for implementing this new batching process. Additional details can be found in the request for comment document.

Responses are due Wednesday, April 29, 2020 at 5 PM Central Daylight Time.

Request for Comments – Draft Marketing Guidelines and Community Solar Disclosure Form

The IPA is seeking public comments on the Adjustable Block Program Draft Marketing Guidelines (Distributed Generation and Community Solar), as well as the Adjustable Block Program Community Solar Disclosure Form. The request for comment announcements, as well as the relevant documents for review can all be found at this link.

The IPA is seeking feedback on edits that include provisions on the HEAT Act (Public Act 101-0590), as well as other changes to both the Distributed Generation and Community Solar Marketing Guidelines.

The IPA is seeking feedback on the Community Solar Disclosure Form as it relates to subscriber acquisition processes.

Stakeholder feedback is due no later than Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at 5:00 PM CST. Please send your comments and/or questions to IPA.Solar@illinois.gov.

 

Group B Small DG Block 2 opening capacity

Upon the closure of Group B Small DG Block 1 on February 21, 2020 at 11:59 PM, the opening capacity of Group B Small DG Block 2 is 46.12 MWac.

The Program Administrator announced on February 22, 2020 that Group B Small DG Block 1 had closed. Per Section 1(C)(3)(b) of the Program Guidebook, this Block was held open for an additional 14 calendar days beyond the date on which it had reached capacity.  Any Group B Small DG applications submitted as part of a paid batch on or prior to February 21, 2020 at 11:59 PM Central Prevailing Time were allocated to Block 1, and thus received Block 1 pricing, provided that the application fee was paid within 10 business days following batch submittal. Any Group B Small DG applications submitted as part of a paid batch after that time will be allocated to Block 2.

The capacity allocated to Block 1 during this 14-day soft-close period impacts the capacity available for Block 2. Any applications submitted as part of a paid batch during the soft-close period that exceeded the original 52 MW capacity of Group B Small DG Block 1 were deducted from the original capacity of 52 MW for Group B Small DG Block 2. Because an additional 5.88 MW of capacity was allocated to Group B Small DG Block 1 during the soft-close period (for a total of 57.88 MW of Block 1 capacity), Group B Small DG Block 2 has an opening capacity of 46.12 MW, not the original capacity of 52 MW.

The final calculation of the opening capacity of Group B Small DG Block 2 was not known until at least 10 business days had passed from the closure of Block 1. Capacity allocated to projects in Group B Small DG Block 1 that are subsequently withdrawn will be added to Group B Small DG Block 2 capacity.

Group A Small DG Block 1 closed

Group A Small DG Block 1 is closed as of March 31, 2020 at 5:00 PM Central Prevailing Time and Group A Small DG Block 2 is now open.

The Program Administrator announced on March 25, 2020 that Group A Small DG Block 1 had reached capacity. Per Section 6.3.2 of the Revised Long-Term Plan, this Block was held open for an additional 7 calendar days.  Any Group A Small DG applications submitted as part of a paid batch on or prior to March 31, 2020 at 4:59 PM Central Prevailing Time were allocated to Block 1, and thus will receive Block 1 pricing, provided that the application fee is paid within 10 business days following batch submittal. Any Group A Small DG applications submitted as part of a paid batch after that time will be allocated to Block 2.

The capacity allocated to Block 1 during this 7-day soft-close period impacts the capacity available for Block 2. Any applications submitted as part of a paid batch during the soft close period that exceed the original 22 MW capacity of Group A Small DG Block 1 will be deducted from the original capacity of 22 MW for Group A Small DG Block 2. For example, if an additional 2 MW of capacity is allocated during the soft-close period (for a total of 24 MW of Block 1 capacity), Group A Small DG Block 2 will have an opening capacity of 20 MW, not the original capacity of 22 MW.

The Program Administrator will make a subsequent announcement with the preliminary calculation of the capacity available for Group A Small DG Block 2, factoring in the capacity allocated to Block 1 during its 7-day soft-close period. The final calculation of the opening capacity of Group A Small DG Block 2 will not be known until at least 10 business days have passed from the closure of Block 1. The Program Administrator will announce the opening capacity available for Group B Small DG Block 2 at that time. Capacity allocated to projects in Group A Small DG Block 1 that are subsequently withdrawn will be added to Group A Small DG Block 2 capacity.