Acquisition planning is the effort to develop a strategic and comprehensive plan to manage, coordinate, and integrate the efforts of responsible personnel to develop a project on schedule and at a reasonable cost. In this course, the Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) will present the acquisition planning process for utility energy service contracts (UESCs) and discuss key considerations for agency acquisition teams to address in the early stages of the project.
This training is part of a sequential series of UESC offerings. The recommended order of completion is:
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Introduction Part 1 — Overview and Background;
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Introduction Part 2 — Legislation and Contracting;
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Phase 1 —Acquisition Planning;
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Phase 2 —Utility Selection and Preliminary Assessment;
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Phase 3 —Project Development;
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Phases 4 and 5 — Project Implementation and Construction, and Post-Acceptance Performance; and
- UESC On-Demand Webinar Series: Advanced Topics — Performance Assurance.
Tracy Niro, Energy Technology Program Specialist, U.S. Department of Energy Read Bio
Tracy Niro is the utility energy service contract (UESC) program manager and Federal Utility Partnership Working Group chair at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP). Tracy also manages the Renewable Energy Procurement Program and oversees utility acquisitions at DOE. Tracy was a 2009 Presidential Management Fellow and was awarded the Fulbright Professional Scholarship in Climate Change and Clean Energy to Australia in 2013. Tracy's career in energy began as a staff accountant for an investor-owned utility. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in economics from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and earned her Juris Doctor from the University of San Diego School of Law.
Karen Thomas, Program Leader, National Renewable Energy Laboratory Read Bio
Karen Thomas serves as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory lead for the U.S. Department of Energy's Federal Energy Management Program's (FEMP) utility energy services contract (UESC) team. She also provides technical support to energy efficiency and renewable energy projects for federal agencies and utilities (nationwide) to implement energy- and dollar-saving projects in federal facilities. She is the lead instructor for the FEMP UESC workshops and provides technical support to federal acquisition teams. An additional aspect of her lead role is growing the number of utilities providing UESC through strategic-partnership building with key utilities and leveraging private-sector investment (approximately $200 million annually) in federal energy projects.
Upon completion of this training, attendees will be able to:
- Describe the purpose and content of the initial project scope developed by the agency;
- Explain how and why agencies may contract with a serving utility without full and open competition and what needs to be documented in the contract file;
- Identify key project considerations that should be addressed in the acquisition plan; and
- Describe resources FEMP makes available to help agencies implement successful UESC projects.