LAS VEGAS, Nev. – The Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents agreed to remain a customer of NV Energy, who will make three $500,000 incentive payments for the years 2019, 2020, and 2021 to benefit NSHE’s institutions.
As part of the Customer Service Agreement, NSHE promised to negotiate with NV Energy for its new fixed-rate renewable energy program, which will allow the entire system of higher education to continue its pursuit of using 100% renewable energy.
“This opportunity not only best meets the energy needs of our institutions and pursues the renewable and sustainable energy goals of the Board of Regents, but it also comes with a significant financial benefit,” said Regents Chair Jason Geddes. “Because we are approaching this decision as one system, we will see $1.5 million added to NSHE’s budgets that will benefit our institutions.”
Chancellor Thom Reilly said the incentive payments could be used toward student success initiatives.
“I am recommending the Board of Regents use the $1.5 million in incentive payments from this contract for student success initiatives,” Reilly said. “Over the past three years the Board of Regents has identified those initiatives and programs that have worked to improve graduation and persistence rates at our institutions. By using this funding for corequisite support, I believe Nevada will see the uptick in student success we have been striving for at our degree-granting institutions.”
In 2018, NV Energy proposed the construction of several new solar projects in Nevada. In March, NV Energy offered the new program and long-term fixed renewable energy rate, or Optional Pricing Program Rate, to certain qualifying large-scale customers and government entities. NSHE timely applied with NV Energy to receive the new rate and energy from renewable sources.
NSHE is committed to negotiate in good faith on the OPPR once it becomes available and is contingent upon the outcome of proceedings before the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada. It is currently anticipated that the new rate may begin as early as 2022. If the Optional Pricing Program Rate is not available by 2022, NV Energy has agreed to pay NSHE an additional $500,000 in 2022 and 2023.
The Nevada System of Higher Education, comprised of two doctoral-granting universities, a state college, four comprehensive community colleges and one environmental research institute, serves the educational and job training needs of Nevada. NSHE provides educational opportunities to more than 100,000 students and is governed by the Board of Regents.