Building operation education courses can help improve energy efficiency knowledge, the basic understanding of optimizing the controls of a building, and how to implement changes to create a comfortable, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly space. Some training courses can also count towards professional certifications such as the Building Operator Certification, LEED certification, and others.
SMECO offers pre-approved applicants financial incentives that cover 80% of enrollment costs or up to a maximum of $1,000 per course, whichever is less, for approved building operator and maintenance training.
Building Operator Education
Operating a building at the highest level of efficiency can be challenging. The increasing complexities of interdependent building systems—HVAC motors, frequency drives, lighting—require building operators to possess a comprehensive understanding of how the systems work together in order to optimize energy efficiency.
SMECO offers financial incentives to help cover the cost for approved building operation and maintenance education courses. The incentives cover a percentage of training course(s) enrollment fees or tuition and are distributed upon course completion. You can choose to take courses related to equipment upgrades and replacements involving variable frequency drives (VFDs), lighting retrofits, lighting controls, and other energy-saving measures. Review the terms and conditions for additional details.
Who Should Participate?
SMECO designed its incentive offering specifically for individuals who have 2 or more years of experience in building operations and support facilities within the SMECO service territory.
Building engineers, stationary engineers, maintenance supervisors, maintenance workers, facility coordinators, HVAC technicians, electricians, operations supervisors and technicians, and others in the field of facility operations and maintenance (O&M) are encouraged to apply.
In cases where the applicant is a contractor, a representative of the SMECO customer must provide a letter, on company letterhead, stating that the contractor is assigned to work at the customer’s facility and that the SMECO customer supports the contractor’s participation in the Building Operation Education Program.
Eligibility for receiving a financial incentive is based on work experience and education, as well as completion of courses, examinations, and on-the-job projects. In order to participate in the program and receive a financial incentive, applicants must be:
- Employed in a position of responsibility for the energy management of the facility or have the potential to influence the building’s energy performance
- Assigned to work at a commercial and/or industrial facility within the SMECO service territory and be present at that facility for at least 50% of their working hours
Pre-approval is required for all BOE applications. Each approved applicant will be eligible to receive a financial incentive that covers 80% of enrollment costs or up to a maximum of $1,000 per certification, whichever is less. Associated costs, including but not limited to travel, food, lodging, test fees, etc., are not eligible for incentives. The applicant must submit proof of attendance within 30 days of course completion by providing a certificate of completion (or similar document), as well as a course invoice in order to qualify for an incentive.
All applicants must first meet minimum eligibility requirements mandated by the associated learning institution prior to submitting an incentive application with SMECO to ensure that all course and certification standards have been met through the learning institution. Furthermore, all applicants must apply for and receive pre-approval from SMECO before enrolling in or attending a course. Separate applications must be submitted for each course an applicant is seeking to pursue.
SMECO has pre-qualified certain courses from specific training organizations, which are specified below. In addition, SMECO will review all courses proposed by an applicant and his or her employer. Only courses with a concentration on electrical energy conservation within buildings are eligible for incentives. Courses with an emphasis on other energy sources, such as gas, or water conservation, etc., are not eligible.
- Certified Energy Manager (CEM)
- Certified Energy Manager in Training (EMIT)
- Certified Building Commissioning Professional (CBCP)
- Certified Lighting Efficiency Professional (CLEP)
- Existing Building Commissioning Professional (EBCP)
- Certified Business Energy Professional (BEP)
- Certified Energy Auditor (CEA)
- Energy Efficiency Practitioner (EEP)
- Certified Commissioning Authority (CxA)
- The Design, Operation, and Maintenance of Building Systems, Part I
- The Design, Operation, and Maintenance of Building Systems, Part II
- Air Handling, Water Treatment, and Plumbing Systems
- Energy Management and Controls
- Refrigeration Systems and Accessories
- Electrical Systems and Illumination
- High-Performance Principles
- High-Performance Practices
- High-Performance Sustainable Building: HVAC Optimization
- Building Operator Certification® Level I
- Building Operator Certification® Level II
- Fundamentals of Energy Efficient Building Operations
- Commercial Building Re-Tuning
- Energy Management Professional
- Certified Apprentice Lighting Technician (CALT)
- Certified Senior Lighting Technician (CSLT)
- Certified Facility Manager (CFM)
- LEED-AP-O&M: Accredited Professional Certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – Building Operations & Maintenance)
- LEED-AP BD&C: Accredited Professional Certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – Building Design Construction)
- Plant Equipment and Operations
- Air Conditioning I, II, III
- Heat Pumps
- Electric Motor
- The Engineer & Management
- Environmental Impact & Engineering
- Controls I, III
Fundamentals of Energy Efficient Building Operations
- March 29
- April 5 and 12
- July 19
- November 8
How to Participate
- Identify a training course or certification with a concentration on the efficiency or conservation of electrical energy in commercial or industrial buildings – Refer to SMECO’s list of pre-qualified courses and/or propose alternative courses
- Complete the BOE application and submit it to SMECO, along with all necessary documentation – SMECO will review the course and determine eligibility
- After receiving pre-approval, the applicant may attend the course(s)
- Upon course completion, the applicant must submit the invoice for the course(s) and provide a copy of the certificate of completion or alternate documentation from the instructor, organization, school, or company administering the course
- Once SMECO receives all necessary documentation, an incentive payment is processed – Payment occurs within about 6 to 8 weeks of final approval
Courses & Certifications Not Currently Pre-Qualified
Applicants may propose a course or certification not currently pre-qualified within the program. Training courses that take place outside of the local area are eligible. The course location may be determined by the applicant and his or her employer. Pre-approval is required for all proposed courses that are not currently pre-qualified. The decision to approve or deny a course is at the discretion of SMECO. The applicant should allow about 10 business days to receive notice of course eligibility.
Business Solutions Service Provider Training
SMECO is pleased to partner with local Service Providers to promote energy efficiency services to our business customers. Service Providers help raise awareness of our energy efficiency programs and inform customers about the opportunities and incentives available.
For more information, please call (866) 235-6044.
Service Provider Training Form
Building Tune-Up Service Provider Training
The SMECO Building Tune-up Program offers financial incentives to identify and implement relatively low-cost operational and maintenance improvements to existing buildings. The building tune-up process monitors, troubleshoots and adjusts electrical, mechanical, and control systems to optimize energy performance. The financial incentives cover up to 75% of service costs, with a per-project cap of $15,000 for small buildings or $30,000 for large buildings.
Building Tune-Up Service Provider Training Form
SMECO is pleased to provide quarterly technical bulletins that provide safety and programmatic tips for conducting field audits and successful inspections of your energy efficiency projects.
- Brining Efficiency to Light With the Design Lights Consortium (PDF)
- Revisions to Scope of Work (PDF)
- Inputting Accurate Wattage (PDF)
- Design Lights Consortium – Technical Requirements Update (PDF)
EmPOWER Maryland programs are funded by a charge on your energy bill. EmPOWER programs can help you reduce your energy consumption and save you money. Learn more about EmPOWER and how you can participate.