Hudson Valley Regional Council

Fall 2018 Newsletter

Fall has arrived here in the Hudson Valley, providing HVRC many more opportunities to assist and partner with local governments and other organizations in our seven-county Mid-Hudson Region, which includes Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster, and Westchester Counties. We look forward to continuing to offer a regional perspective and providing education, outreach, and advocacy services to the communities we serve.

HVRC continues to provide technical support and educational resources to Hudson Valley Communities. Our annual updates of the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy  (CEDS) detail the economic health of Hudson Valley communities. Between now and June 2019 we are working on the five-year CEDs update. The Hudson Valley Region Distress Criteria Statistical Report provides a snapshot of the economic distress of various municipalities, based on 2015 data.

Additionally, we continue to provide technical assistance to municipalities and businesses interested in pursuing EDA funding; we continue to offer water quality and stormwater management educational resources, funded by NYSDEC; and we continue to support municipalities and counties as they pursue cost-saving and energy and GHG emission-reducing actions through
NYSERDA's Clean Energy Communities Program.
Photo credit: Instagram @Vsunlight7
Tourism represents an important sector for economic development across the Mid-Hudson Region. HVRC's Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) outlines regional conditions, trends, and goals to promote sustainable economic development throughout our seven counties.
Clean Energy Communities Program
Photo credit: Warwick Valley Central School District

Navigating Large-Scale Solar Development in Your Community
A Tour in Orange County for Mid-Hudson Municipal Officials

Join the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Clean Energy Communities (CEC) team on October 26, 2018 from 9:45 A.M. to 3:15 P.M. for a tour of solar installations located in Orange County. This bus tour will include visits to solar installations in three communities and will include learnings around public support, siting, connectivity, and project financing issues. 
The unique challenges encountered and, ultimately, the benefits captured from each of these projects will also be discussed in the context of these recently and successfully developed installations. The projects include a 66 kW solar array sited behind a town hall and 2 larger systems of approximately 2 MW each – one sited on a municipal capped landfill and the other offsetting the electricity usage of an entire school district. 
This hands-on workshop will afford plenty of opportunity for questions and engagement with fellow municipal officials. Lunch will be provided. No rain date is scheduled.
Climate Smart Communities Program

DEC AnnouncesTwo New Certified Climate Smart Communities!
Photo credit: Town of Tusten Councilperson Brandi Merolla

The Towns of Tusten and Bethel Achieved Bronze Certification for Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Energy Use.
  • Many communities are actively pursuing the CSC Program. And we are excited to have supported the Towns of Tusten and Bethel and in achieving CSC certification this year! The press event held last week celebrated their achievements and hard work
  • NYSDEC's CSC Certification Portal streamlines the application process for local governments seeking to become Certified Climate Smart Communities. Communities can readily explore the various actions and resources and available for each as well as view what other communities have submitted

LED Streetlights
  • Cost and Energy Savings: Many communities are converting their streetlights to LEDs and capturing significant cost and energy savings by doing so! Communities are aggregating their streetlighting projects in partnership with NYPA to bring costs down in several of our counties
  • HVRC can provide significant assistance to your community, including provision of an LED Streetlighting Conversion Costs Analysis. This analysis outlines side-by-side the potential savings for LED conversion in both utility and municipally-owned conversion pathways, based on your communities' current street lighting bills
  • Contact HVRC today  to sign-up for your free LED Streetlighting Conversion Costs Analysis!
Community Corner: Check out some of these links below to see what communities are working on throughout the region:
  • Ulster County Green Business Challenge
    • The purpose of the Ulster County Green Business Challenge is to help Ulster County businesses, organizations and municipalities to reduce greenhouse gas emission to mitigate climate change, and, in most cases, reap considerable savings doing so. We also want to support our local green building contractors, renewable energy providers and other businesses that implement sustainability practices
    • The Goal: With the help of volunteer GBC Ambassadors and local experts, 100 Ulster County businesses, organizations, or municipalities will complete an energy retrofit, install solar or other renewable energy, or implement another action that will both save money and significantly reduce carbon emissions
  • Solarize Esopus:
    • Solarize Esopus is a community education and group purchasing program that makes it easier and more affordable for homeowners and building owners to go solar with confidence (and get a free home solar assessment and discounted solar installation!)
    • You don’t have to live in Esopus to be part of the Solarize Esopus campaign. Lotus Solar and Apex Solar Power will extend the discount throughout Ulster County – but hurry, this is only available to you through October 7th!
  • Climate Smart Task Forces: Saugerties, Gardiner, Philipstown
Communities throughout our region continue to be actively engaged in NYSERDA's Clean Energy Communities Program. HVRC's coordinators are working closely with many local governments, engaged Conservation Advisory Councils (or similar advisory bodies), and many other important partners on the ten High Impact Actions under this program.

Local goverments that complete four actions become 'designated' Clean Energy Communities by New York State. Block 3 grants are now available on a first-come first-served basis to newly-designated communities. There are still currently ~10 Block 3 awards, at $5,000 each, available in our region!

Please contact HVRC to get technical assistance and support from us today!
Designated Clean Energy Communities

Village of Croton-on-Hudson
Village of Dobbs Ferry
Village of Goshen
Village of Hastings-on-Hudson
Village of Mount Kisco
Village of New Paltz
Village of Port Chester
Village of Wappingers FallsCity of Beacon

Town of Bedford

Town of Bethel
Town of Mamaroneck
Town of Marbletown
Town of New Castle
Town of New Paltz
Town of Ossining
Town of Red Hook
Town of Rosendale
Town of Saugerties
Town of Somers
Town of Tusten
Town of Warwick
City of Kingston
City of New Rochelle
City of Peekskill
City of Rye
City of White Plains
City of Yonkers
Orange County

Sullivan County
Ulster County

Funding Opportunties
  • Ground Source Heat Pump Rebate
    • Applications due by June 30th, 2019
    • This rebate is for designers and installers of GSHP systems. Site owners interested in this initiative should find a NYSERDA-approved designer or installer to evaluate a project at your home or business.
      • Single family home can receive up to $15,000
      • A building can receive up to $500,000
      • A site with multiple buildings can receive up to $1 million
  • Flex Tech Program: Open enrollment.
    • Provides 50% of the cost to produce an objective, site-specific, and targeted study on how best to implement clean energy and/or energy efficiency technologies. A NYSERDA FlexTech Consultant will work with you to complete the energy study 

Electric Vehicles: It is a great time to buy an electric vehicle or get a charging station installed in your community!  Available incentives include:
  • NYSERDA's Drive Clean Rebate
    • Point-of-sale rebate
    • Up to $2,000 rebate for new electric vehicle purchases or leases
    • Available to all NYS residents, including local governments
  • Federal Tax Credit
    • All-electric and hybrid cars purchased in or after 2010 may be eligible for a federal income tax credit
  • Charge Ready New York
    • Charge Ready NY offers public and private organizations that install Level 2 EV charging stations at public parking facilities, workplaces, and multifamily apartment buildings rebates of $4,000 per charging port they install, a significant savings of 30% to 80% percent, depending on station and installation costs
  • NYSDEC Zero Emission Vehicle Rebates
    • Round two closed on May 31, 2018 but DEC anticipates opening a third round of ZEV rebates later this year
    • $5,000 rebate per vehicle
    • Up to $8,000 rebate per port for EV charging station
Food Recovery
  • Food recovery is related to HVRC's broad regional advocacy work with groups such as the Mid-Hudson Regional Sustainability Coalition. There are many  partners and ongoing initiatives in our region that play an important role in food recovery, including Food Bank of the Hudson Valley, Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley and Hudson Valley Agribusiness Development Corporation’s (HVADC)  partnership on the FeedHV project, Cornell Cooperative Extension Orange County’s gleaning program, and Dutchess Outreach, among many others! We will continue sharing information in future issues on the various regional organizations that are working to reduce food waste in the Hudson Valley
  • Did you know that food waste prevention can also reduce GHG emissions associated with landfills? "Organics made up nearly 24 percent of local government solid waste in New York State in 2008, according to DEC. When these organics end up in landfills, they produce methane. Methane is a short-lived but powerful greenhouse gas, so when it is important to either compost organic waste or send it to an anaerobic digester. Diverting this portion of the waste stream cuts back on tipping fees for local governments and reduces the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions generated from solid waste." (CSC Certification Portal, PE 5 Action: Residential Organic Waste Program). For more information about how your municipality can implement an organic waste program, please contact HVRC today!
"The Food Bank of the Hudson Valley is dedicated to alleviating hunger, while preventing the waste of wholesome food." Their 16th Annual Walk to Fight Hunger will take place on Sunday, October 7th at the Walkway Over the Hudson in Highland, NY.  Registration and the start of the Walk will begin at the Walkway over the Hudson at the newly re-opened visitors center in Highland, NY, at 10:30 a.m. Please join us, either as an individual, or as part of a team, and Walk to Fight Hunger.  Registration forms are available HERE
Photo credit: Instagram @Vsunlight7
Contact us:

Hudson Valley Regional Council
3 Washington Center #2
Newburgh, NY 12550
 (845) 564-4075

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Hudson Vallley Regional Council · 3 Washington Center #2 · Newburgh, Ny 12550 · USA

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