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Local authorities can support residents in fuel poverty with a way to qualify for funding to improve the energy efficiency of their home called ECO4 Flex.
Councils can use the scheme in various ways, whether it’s to create a framework of installers and managing agents to receive ECO4 Flex applications, or run schemes themselves.
In all circumstances however, certain processes must be followed.
See our guide below or download our PDF guide.
Publishing a Statement of Intent (SoI)
SoIs list the eligibility criteria for ECO4 Flex and outline a local authority’s intention to participate in the scheme. It must follow the template provided by Ofgem.
Councils may take part in Flex on their own, or as a consortium, and must publish an SoI on their own website before making declarations that households meet the eligibility criteria.
The SoI must be signed by the CEO of the council or dedicated responsible person.
Local authorities are responsible for determining whether households are eligible.
When councils wish to approve an application for ECO4 funding, they must produce a declaration of eligibility.
Councils are responsible for collecting and retaining sufficient evidence, which energy companies may need access to for audit purposes for up to three years after ECO4 finishes.
Only a council officer can sign a Flex declaration, and it must state which eligibility route has been accepted for individual households.
A template has been created which is recommended for use.
The declaration does not include criteria concerning the property’s EPC band – this responsibility lies with the installer.
Declarations should be sent to the funding energy supplier.
Each declaration must include a unique reference number (URN). These URNs will be used by Ofgem to carry out checks against energy company project notifications.
The URN must follow the format: ANNNNNNNN-NNNNN
The ‘ANNNNNNNN’ should identify the local authority, each local authority has a nine digit Office for National Statistics (ONS) code. These ONS codes are available online.
The second section of the URN, ‘NNNNN’, should represent the number of the declaration in the order it has been made. For example, the first declaration can be 00001.
Local authorities must send a declaration notification to Ofgem (this is separate from the Flex declaration).
Ofgem has set up a new process to receive declaration notifications which uses a CSV file as the notification template.
In addition, the ECO4 Flex Data Dictionary provides a description of all the fields and general information to help councils complete the declaration notification.
Councils will need to fill out each of the fields by manually adding data or by clicking on the drop-down boxes - no signature is required here.
All templates referenced can be found on the Ofgem website:
For support on ECO4 contact:
01422 880 100
(Photos by Dylan Gillis on Unsplash & Romain Dancre on Unsplash)
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