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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Who will review my submission, and how long will it take?

A: REV Connect will respond to your submission within five business days and if your submission meets the minimum requirements, you will be invited to have a qualification consultation with a member of the REV Connect team.

Within approximately three weeks of your consultation, we will provide you with initial feedback and summarize your idea to the New York State investor-owned utilities (Central Hudson Gas and Electric Corporation, the Consolidated Edison Company of New York, National Grid, New York State Electric and Gas Corporation, Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc., and Rochester Gas and Electric Corporation) and New York State energy-related agencies and authorities (including the Public Service Commission/Department of Public Service, NYSERDA, the Office of the Governor, the New York Power Authority, Long Island Power Authority (LIPA), and PSEG – Long Island as a contractor to LIPA).

After that point, we will periodically provide feedback as we receive it from the New York utilities and the State energy agencies. Each of the utilities working with REV Connect has designated staff who engage with the REV Connect team at regular intervals to review submission ideas and provide feedback. These staff also work with REV Connect to determine how to route ideas to the relevant business and technical personnel within their company.

Q: How are submissions vetted? Who makes the judgement call about what ideas proceed?

A: Please see the REV Connect evaluation criteria and our process on the REV Connect portal.

Q: How is my confidential or proprietary information safeguarded?

A: We ask that you do not submit any confidential or proprietary information in your REV Connect web submission. We expect that in most cases we will be able to assess your submission without such information. If there is certain confidential or proprietary information that you feel would help support your submission, please discuss that with the REV Connect team member in your qualification consultation.

The Terms posted on the REV Connect portal provide further guidance on how the New York State Freedom of Information Law applies to NYSERDA initiatives, such as REV Connect.

Q: What is the deadline for submissions?

A: While we are accepting submissions on a rolling basis, we encourage you to provide your submission as soon as it is practical. As this is not an RFP, multiple submissions and iterations are acceptable. As your submission goes through the REV Connect process, it gets more refined and shaped to better articulate the business model and value to customers and the utility. The earlier you get a submission in, the more opportunity you will have to shape the submission.

 Q: What if I have more than one idea or solution to offer? Can I make more than one submission?

A: There is no limit on the number of submissions a single company or individual can make. Each idea or business model concept should be submitted separately. Each submission will be screened against the same set of criteria, and the REV Connect team can address several submissions during a single qualification consultation.

 Q: Is it possible to work with REV Connect to modify an application after its submission?

A: Yes, our REV Connect team will work with you to refine your idea after it has been submitted.

Q: Do submissions go to all utilities? Or can I target one utility specifically?

A: Unless an alternate course of action is specified with the submitter, a submission summary will be shared with all of the New York State investor-owned utilities and State energy agencies.

We encourage submitters to review the New York State investor-owned Utility Profiles on the REV Connect portal, and consider which utilities are the best fit for their idea. Within the REV Connect portal submission form, a submitter can select specific utilities that are targeted by the submission. Each utility regularly receives a report that summarizes all submissions to REV Connect and that highlights submissions targeted to that specific utility.

Q: Is LIPA/PSEG – Long Island involved in REV Connect?

A: At this time, our available resources to invite, review, and facilitate submissions through REV Connect are focused on the investor-owned utilities regulated under the PSC 14-M-01010 Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) framework. Summaries of the submissions to REV Connect also are shared with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) and with PSEG – Long Island as the manager of LIPA’s electric system; PSEG-Long Island can work with submitters for potential demonstration projects in Long Island at its discretion.

Q: Do submitters attend the initial meeting with the utility and REV Connect?

 A: Submissions initially are presented to utilities by REV Connect team members. If a utility has technical questions, the REV Connect team will communicate with the submitter or will arrange a follow-up meeting between the submitter and the utility.

 Q: What happens if I don’t meet criteria for facilitation or no utility is interested?

A: For any idea submitted to REV Connect, regardless of how far it proceeds in our process, we will provide feedback on how the idea can be improved. In some cases, we may invite the submitter to refine their idea and re-submit. In addition, REV Connect and NYSERDA can help identify other opportunities and programs that the submitter could pursue outside of REV Connect.

Q: When will a utility select a third-party company through competitive procurement? Can a vendor propose an idea, refine it with REV Connect, pitch it to the utility, and then fail to be selected through a procurement?

A: The utilities determine when to utilize a competitive procurement process (e.g., RFI or RFP). A competitive procurement is likely in cases where multiple solution providers offer a comparable product or service. In other cases, utilities may choose to enter into a demonstration project or strategic partnership with a REV Connect submitter directly, without issuing an RFP or RFI.

Upcoming procurements that are known in advance are shared within the Innovation Opportunities section of the REV Connect portal.

Q: Why are utilities’ non-wire solutions projects separated from REV demo projects?         

A: Non-wires solutions projects have specific operational requirements in terms of capacity and timing. REV demos on the other hand, aim to test new ideas and business models that are not proven, and hence include a certain level of uncertainty. With the above in mind, market partners are not precluded from submitting ideas for REV demos through REV Connect that can deliver benefits to utilities as non-wires solutions, as long as they can prove that they can meet the operational requirements that utilities set for non-wires solutions.

Q: I’m concerned that a utility may take my idea and turn it around into a procurement. Can you speak to this concern?

 A: REV Connect is focused on accelerating sustainable business models that provide value to customers, solution providers, and utilities. REV Connect helps identify and define potential business models and partnership structures that would provide value and satisfy existing and emerging needs under REV.

REV Connect enables submitters to collaborate with utilities on innovative ideas early in the decision-making process, with learnings potentially feeding into future procurements. Submitters should share in the REV Connect platform information that they feel comfortable putting in front of a wide audience within the utilities, and should try to avoid sharing proprietary or confidential information.

Q: I’m looking for another company to partner with on my submission. Can REV Connect help?

A: We can help you build a project team if you let us know what capabilities you are seeking in partners.

Q: If I have a technology solution that has been proven or adopted in another region, how do I develop its applicability to a New York State utility?

 A: Data and resources are available in the REV Connect portal for each utility’s service territory, and submitters are encouraged to adapt their ideas in order to be better suited for New York State’s demographic characteristics and energy landscape.

Q: Can companies or teams from outside the US apply as well?

A: Yes, as long as they are legally and physically capable to provide any proposed products and services in New York State.

 Q: Is grant funding available through REV Connect?

A: REV Connect does not award funding. Expert feedback and technical assistance are provided at no charge to submitters. If a project is defined through REV Connect, the utilities and market partners will work together to identify the appropriate source of funding.

Q: Is there a limit or goal for the number or dollar amount of REV Connect projects to be completed?

 A: The is no limit to the number or dollar amount of projects that can be submitted to REV Connect. The overarching goal of REV Connect is to drive a pipeline of ideas, with our current target being 140 ideas by June 2018. Ideas submitted to REV Connect will be evaluated against a predetermined set of criteria, and will be presented to utilities based on their needs and priorities. REV Connect aims to identify and advance at least 12 business models that are executed between a utility and a market partner, either in the form of REV demo, an innovative energy efficiency program, or a non-wires solution project.

 Q: How is REV Connect funded?

A: REV Connect is funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA).

 Q: Can you provide quantitative information on submissions and results to date?

A: We will publish metrics relating to REV Connect on our portal.

Q: Are the submissions to REV Connect made public?

A: REV Connect does not make submissions public. Please refer to our Terms for guidance on the treatment of proprietary or confidential information.

Q: Why can’t I upload attachments to the portal? 

 A: If your submission meets minimum requirements, we will follow up to learn more, with an opportunity to send us additional attachments for your submission.

 Q: What do I do if I have additional questions before I submit?

 A: Please contact us.

 Q: What if my idea doesn’t relate to one of these Innovation Sprint topics?

 A: Submit!  REV Connect continues to fulfill its mission for an ongoing open call for submissions to all Innovation Opportunities.

 Q: What if I already submitted an idea related to one of these Innovation Sprint topics?

 A: Great! Your REV Connect facilitator will inform you about how you can participate with your existing submission.