Watch CBS News

I-Team: Mired in consumer complaints, future of Mass Save program in question

I-Team: Future of Mass Save program in question
I-Team: Future of Mass Save program in question 03:09

BOSTON - John Briggs spent $57,000 on a geothermal heat pump for his Lexington home. He is committed to getting away from fossil fuel and already has solar panels and two electric cars. It was a pricey investment but worth it in the end. 

John researched heat pumps and knew with federal and Mass Save rebate programs he would recoup some of the money he spent. He expected the project to cost about $27,000 when it was all said and done. 

John said getting the federal money was easy but Mass Save refused to give him the rebate claiming his 2006 weatherization certification was too old. John told the I-Team, "$15,000 is not small change. It's so frustrating there is no accountability." 

John isn't the only one frustrated by Mass Save. Last December, the I-Team reported on other homeowners who waited months before finally getting the money they were owed. 

At that time, Mass Save said it was rolling out a new customer friendly program in January of 2022. But nearly a year later, consumers are still complaining. 

John says he complied with the spirit of the program, insulated his house and put in geothermal system as the state is advocating, but still couldn't get the rebate he deserved. 

Mass Save is a program run by the utility companies and the money to fund the rebates comes from a delivery charge that all of us pay on our gas and electric bill. 

Just this week, the Clean Heat Commission released a report calling for wholesale changes to the program. Attorney Caitlin Peale Sloan with the Conservation Law Foundation says the report's recommendations are an encouraging sign that the program could be part of a state agency or body that would help people get energy efficient updates at a price they can afford. 

As for John he says Mass Save program is not a generous thing from power companies. "We pay into this," John said. "This is a public trust. I feel like they violated that public trust." 

After the I-Team got involved, John got his $15,000 rebate. We reached out to the utility companies for comment on the report. They tell us they will work with the state on any program changes.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.