Municipal Energy Resilience Program

The Municipal Energy Resilience Program (MERP) is a new grant program funded by Vermont Building and General Services (BGS) and administered by regional planning commissions to help communities become more energy resilient.

Passed on June 2nd, 2022, Act 172 (As Enacted link) authorized MERP $45 million to support dependable and sustainable connections to critical municipal services for all Vermonters. Buildings owned by cities, towns, fire districts, incorporated villages, and all other governmental incorporated units except for school districts are eligible for the program.No local match is required for this funding.

The Municipal Energy Resilience Program (MERP) will provide staff support, application and technical assistance, and funding to help communities become more energy resilient, reduce energy use and operating costs, and curb greenhouse gas emissions by promoting renewable energy, battery storage, electric vehicle charging, weatherization, thermal improvements, fuel switching, and enhanced building comfort in municipal buildings and facilities.

The program will provide the following funding opportunities:

  • Free building energy assessments
  • Up to $4,000 grants for energy resilience community capacity building
  • Up to $500,000 grants for building renovation projects for weatherization, thermal efficiency, and supplementing or replacing fossil fuel heating systems with more efficient renewable or electric alternatives.
  • Revolving loan program to support future retrofit needs beyond Implementation grant funds. This program will be developed following the successful launch of the other program components that have a spending deadline.

Learn more about each program in the sections below. An FAQ is also available by clicking HERE.

A quick review of the program and template selectboard approval language is available here: Template Selectboard approval.

MERP Timeline

The timeline below is subject to change as the program develops:

  • March 8th 2023 – Applications open for $4,000 Community Capacity Grant
  • April 2023 – Applications open for free Energy Assessment
  • January 2024 – Energy Assessments must be completed
  • Spring 2024 – Applications open for up to $500,000 Implementation Grant
  • December 2024 – Community Capacity Grant and Implementation Grant funds must be obligated.
  • December 2026 – All Implementation Grant funds must be expended
  • December 2028 – All funded projects must be completed


All Addison County municipality-owned buildings are eligible for the MERP programs. To receive MERP Implementation funds the town must comply with the following:

  1. The covered municipality has access to high-speed Internet as defined in the State’s Telecommunication Plan set forth in 30 V.S.A. § 202c or a plan is in place by 2024 to ensure access to high-speed Internet (participation in a Communications Union District qualifies); and
  2. Any building that is assessed is compliant with the American Disabilities Act at the time the project is completed.


MERP Project Prioritization

The Community Capacity grant is non competitive, meaning any town that applies for a qualified use will receive funding.

Allocation of funds for the Free Energy Assessment and Implementation Grant will be prioritized based on need. Towns with a high energy burden defined as the proportion of income spent on energy, including heating, electricity, and transportation will receive highest priority. The MERP program is using the 2019 Efficiency VT Energy Burden report as the standard for this portion of the priority scoring. Other prioritization criteria include: administrative capacity, geographic location, and community size.

The list below shows where your town falls on the energy burden scale.

High Energy Burden

  • Whiting (13%)
  • Goshen (12.3%)
  • Bristol (11.9%)
  • Ripton (11.3%)
  • Orwell (11.2%)
  • Panton (11.2%)

Moderate Energy Burden

  • Shoreham (10.7%)
  • Bridport (10.6%)
  • Middlebury (10.6%)
  • Vergennes (10.3%)
  • New Haven (10.1%)
  • Salisbury (10%)
  • Ferrisburgh (9.7%)
  • Leicester (9.6%)
  • Lincoln (9.3%)
  • Starksboro (9.2%)

Low Energy Burden

  • Addison (8.8%)
  • Waltham (8.7%)
  • Weybridge (8%)
  • Cornwall (7.9%)
  • Monkton (7.7%)

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