Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, Section 31 webinar FAQS – June 2022

 

As well as these FAQs please see here the checklist of documents which much be provided as part of the standard completions


Q: Can we uplift the original cost of like for like replacements (i.e., gas boilers) - as these costs - now 18 months old, are not accurate. Whereas the delivered ASHP or other projects are accurate - with the 2022 'crisis' uplifts included?

A: Phase 1 PSDS did not include a like for like client contribution as part of the scheme criteria.


Q: Question about evidence - you said that contracts/POs are acceptable in lieu of invoices, but that is not noted on the slides - can you provide/signpost to details about that please? 

A: Contracts and purchase orders can be provided alongside invoices if the latter doesn’t have sufficient evidence to tie it to the grant. For example, if the invoice does not have details about the site, doesn’t mention the PSDS funded works or types of measures being installed which tie it to the grant funded measures, these can be supported by contracts and POs. However, contracts and POs cannot be provided instead of invoices. 

Q: Can we update the cost of a kWh of gas and electricity when updating the application form? 

A: You can. You can update this in the Step 2 support tool section of the application form. However, we may ask you to supply evidence of the change should it be outside of average costs estimates we hold.

Q: Our funding is a small part of a much larger building refurb. Are we able to submit pricing documents/payments for application for the whole project that evidence low carbon works as part of a much larger corresponding invoice?

A: Yes, as long as the invoice and evidence you provide clearly states what part of the costs is grant funded and which is funded by other sources. This can be evidence by purchase orders and other evidence if the invoice itself does not have a breakdown.

Q: I assume that the information provided during the interim audit has been passed through to the end point assessment process, so we don’t have to resubmit that general project information?

A: Internal coordination within Salix is currently taking place to understand what information we already have as part of the audit. If we don’t have the full range of completion documents we have asked for, we will come back to the client and request the outstanding information.

Q: Has Salix had any concerns raised by grant recipients about the level of detail requested under the conditions? What tests does Salix make to balance the amount of work required to provide and review this data against the value this information will give? 

A: We appreciate feedback from our clients and have attempted to make the process as easy and streamlined as possible. However, what we are asking for does not differ or exceed what is normally asked from any capital project to evidence its successful completion.

Q: Your slide here says you only need evidence of PSDS-funded work, but I have been asked by Salix for evidence of the match funded portion of expenditure too. 

A: We only need evidence in the form of invoices for the grant funded works as part of your Statement of Expenditure and final costs.

Q: Is the final value letter the same as the Statement of Expenditure? 

A: No, the Completion and Confirmation of Final Value Letter is a separate document which should have been provided to you already. Please contact your relationship manager if this has not been sent to you. 

Q: For DNO works our contractors are carrying out the some of the installation on our side of the boundary (connections/ trenches and fuse panels). Can we use this as commissioning/ retention? 


A: Unfortunately, this cost is part of the contestable works and, unless completed before or on the 30 June 2022, cannot be funded by the PSDS Scheme. 

Q: Is photographic evidence required for every single building included in scope for each energy conservation measure?

 A: We need to see photographic evidence of the highest value measures for every site included in the project scope. We will accept a sample where several units have been installed (e.g., LED lighting). For those technologies that are not clear to photograph (e.g., loft or cavity wall insulation or pipework), we can accept in-progress photographs. However, each project is different, so please speak to your relationship manager if you have several sites and it will be challenging to provide all the evidence. 

 

Q: What do you do if you are part way through a site and some parts will be completed before end of June, but other parts won't be?

A: We would require a detailed breakdown of what has been completed on-site and what is yet to complete on your final monitoring report. We also require a final expenditure for all the spending up until 30 June. We also need confirmation from your authorising official that the organisation will cover the project's cost after 30 of June. Salix will need assurances that the organisation will complete the sites included in the project scope. Therefore, we would treat you as a 'delayed' completion, and you would need to provide us with monthly monitoring reports with updates until full project completion.


Q: How are snagging/de-snagging costs treated if this spend occurs after 30 June? 

A: Snagging/de-snagging can be covered by the retention cost if it was claimed on your final expenditure statement. The first year’s report, after project completion, should include the retention value paid to contractors as well as the value that was used to cover the cost of snagging. It should be supported by invoices and a Statement of Expenditure which will be checked against the retention value declared at project completion.


Q: What alternative evidence is accepted other than practical completion certificates? 

A: We do require a practical completion certificate from the contractor as part of the completion process. However, if you cannot obtain a certificate, please speak to your relationship manager, and explain the reason you cannot provide them.

 

Q: Please confirm which documents/submissions are required by 7 or the 31 of July? 

A: The final monitoring report and the final statement of expenditure (supported by invoices) are due on 7 July. The other completion documents, such as the building and technology form, contractor completion certificate, photographic evidence, and the contractor webform, are due on 31 July.

 

Q: For projects due to complete by 30 June, am I correct that we will have until 31 July to pay the associated invoices, and therefore the final monthly report and statement of expenditure and confirmation of final grant spend needs to be submitted by 7 August?

A: You do not need to have paid all your invoices by that time. This will be between you and your contractor, but you will need to evidence that the work has been completed or that the grant spending occurred by the 30 June. As such, you can send us your invoice evidence even if this has not yet been paid out to your contractor. The invoice must be dated within the month of June, or specifically reference that it is invoicing work that was completed up until and including the month of June. Otherwise, it will not be accepted. 

 

Q: How do we take account of installation costs for things ordered but not installed by 30 June?

A: Unfortunately, we cannot cover any installation costs after 30 June as this is past the grant end date. If you order before the grant end date, this is what we can balance, but we cannot fund any installation costs after that date. 

 

Q: If you don't achieve the savings predicted, would you expect commentary as to why this may be? 

A: Try to provide us with as much information as you can in terms of energy savings. If these are lower than expected, then there would be a conversation between Salix and yourselves. If we had formally agreed to those savings at project closure, there shouldn’t be any changes with relation to the grant. However, we would still need to review the energy savings information you send to us and understand how it relates to what information you provided in your final application form and why this may differ from the information you provide in your annual monitoring report form.

 

Q: What happens if post project monitoring shows lower saving than estimated?

A: Salix will require as much information as possible relating to why your savings are lower. You will be required to work closely with our Carbon and Energy Technical team so that we can understand why the mismatch occurred between the evidence you provided to us on project completion compared to the data we gather via the annual monitoring report form. We need justifications as to why the energy savings are lower and you need to show that you have taken all necessary steps to ensure the high quality and efficiency of the measures you have installed as part of the grant funding. We will then make a decision as to how to proceed and what consequences there may be based on the case you have made and the information you provided.

 

Q: Will there be a Salix template to complete for the annual monitoring? Assume this will just be kWh consumed on site and associated carbon savings?

A: There will be a template, and this will be sent to you at a later date.