City to give natural gas rebates

COVINGTON -- City of Covington utility customers have the opportunity to make their homes more energy efficient and save money in the process.

The City Council recently agreed to participate in the 2011 Great Water Heater Roundup, a campaign through the Municipal Gas Authority of Georgia that is aimed at educating consumers on natural gas water heating.

Customers who purchase a new natural gas water heater or convert from a propane heater during the next few months are eligible to receive rebates.

The current rebate for natural gas water heaters installed in a new home or business is $200. During the promotion, that will increase to $300 for tankless or Energy Star rated water heaters.

The city is also initiating the Propane Conversion Program. Customers who now use propane and convert to natural gas will be eligible to receive a $300 rebate for water heaters, $100 for ranges and $100 for modification of a furnace and a free service line of up to 100 feet.

The city can expect to receive payback of its investment in two to three years, according to Public Services Director Bill Meecham.

The city is also offering a $50 finder's fee for employees who bring in a prospect who follows through with a conversion.

Both programs will start in October. The Propane Conversion Program will run for 90 days and the Great Water Heater Roundup will run for 60 days.

"There's plenty of gas in our supply portfolio and hopefully we will increase sales to customers through this program and bring in more revenue to the city, while at the same time giving the customer a good deal because they're putting in new or more efficient appliances in the case of the Water Heater Roundup," said Meecham. "In the case of the Propane Conversion Program, propane is very expensive right now and there is a likelihood of it staying fairly expensive. We feel we can provide good service and we can offer the citizens a savings, so it's a win-win situation. We get the business and they get the savings."

For more information about either program, contact Stacy Walden at the City of Covington at 770-385-2027.