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Heating Oil and Propane Update

FAQs for State Energy Offices

Q1: What price should be reported to EIA when submitting weekly data?

EIA requests that you collect / report the residential credit price (keep-full prices being preferred) and that all prices exclude taxes for the Monday of each survey week, even if that Monday falls on a holiday. Prices should not include discounts for payment of cash or for payment made within a short period of time. However, if a company deals exclusively in cash, then this price should be reported and noted in the file sent to EIA.

Q2: When is this data due to EIA each week?

The EIA-877 "Winter Heating Fuels Telephone Survey" will begin the first Monday in October. Data should be submitted to EIA as soon as they are available but no later than noon on Tuesday of each week. Data collection will continue each Monday on a weekly basis through March.

Q3: How does SHOPP/EIA-877 operate over holidays?

The data collection schedule is generally pushed back one day in the week if the holiday falls on a Monday or Tuesday. If the holiday falls on a Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday, then there is no change to the reporting schedule. Instructions pertaining to holiday schedules will be updated in the notices section within the IDC.

Q4: I plan to be out of the office, how should I handle data collection?

Your office is still responsible for data collection even if you are out of the office. You should designate a back-up person for data collection in the event that you are sick or on vacation. To facilitate with training of back-up personnel EIA has recorded a basic training session on data collection.

If your office is closed or you run into another issue that will prevent your office from collecting and/or reporting data on time, please contact Marcela Rourk at (202) 586-4412 or marcela.rourk@eia.gov as soon as you are aware of the potential problem so that we can make other arrangements.

Q5: In the event of furlough days, how does my office proceed with handling their EIA-877 survey responsibilities?

In the event that furlough days fall within the week's data collection cycles, please contact the EIA-877 Survey Manager, Marcela Rourk: marcela.rourk@eia.gov, (202) 586-4412.

Q6: How do I enter prices into the Internet Data Collection (IDC) system?

First, please verify that you can login to the IDC before the start of the season. The instructions for the IDC are available once you have logged onto the server. There is a link from the "Instructions & Help" section to a printable version.

Q7: How does my State participate in the EIA-877?

Data is collected from States which have been determined to consume a significant amount of heating oil and/or propane for residential heating purposes during the winter months. EIA receives a fixed amount of funding each year from Congress to fund the EIA-877, and periodically reviews the possibility of including new States in the survey. States that choose to participate are asked to enter into a five-year cooperative agreement with the U.S. Energy Information Administration. As part of the cooperative agreement, States collect data on heating oil and propane prices on a weekly basis during the winter heating season based on a sample provided to them by EIA. These data are then aggregated and published weekly on the EIA website. These efforts are funded jointly by State and Federal funds, with each accounting for 50% of the program cost.

Our five year project period started in August 2011. It is projected that the next five year cooperative agreement project period will start around August 2016. If your State is interested in participating in the EIA-877, please contact Marcela Rourk at marcela.rourk@eia.gov or (202) 586-4412.

The following key documents must be submitted by participating States at the beginning of each five-year cooperative agreement cycle: A checklist of the cooperative agreement package components is provided here for your reference.

In addition to the weekly data collection efforts during the SHOPP season, all States accepting funds are asked to submit a final report describing the season's activities, as well as a financial report form, SF-425, Federal Financial Report each year. A final report will also be required to be filed at the end of each 5-year cooperative agreement cycle.

Q8: How does my State Energy Office draw grant funds?

The U.S. Department of Energy has transitioned to an electronic procurement system. As a result, the Department is currently utilizing FedConnect as the sole avenue for monetary disbursements. Therefore it is vital that all recipients register with FedConnect at their earliest convenience. As in the past, please note that the distribution of money will be made in one lump sum as opposed to periodic disbursements.

To facilitate receipt of payment, please also register as a participant in the Automated Standard Application for Payments (ASAP) program if you have not done so already. This program is set up by the U.S. Department of the Treasury to allow States receiving federal funds to draw from accounts pre-authorized by Federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Energy. Please visit the ASAP website for more information.

Q9: Will I be notified when Grants are awarded?

After submitting the Grant applications, States should routinely check FedConnect to determine when their award funds are ready for disbursement. In addition, the States will receive an email communication informing them that their grant funds are available. To get updates on the status of grant availability, please contact Marcela Rourk at marcela.rourk@eia.gov.

Q10: There has been reorganization within our office, and SHOPP will now be the responsibility of another agency within the State. What do I need to do to ensure that the new agency receives SHOPP funding?

As soon as you become aware of any reorganization within your State that will impact SHOPP, contact Marcela Rourk at marcela.rourk@eia.gov. The process of transferring the SHOPP award from one agency to another can be time-consuming, and it is imperative to begin making changes within the system as soon as possible. You will need to provide EIA with
    1. New agency name
    2. Address
    3. New point of contact information
    4. Telephone number
    5. Email
In addition, the new agency will need a DUNS number, and will need to make sure they are registered correctly on the System for Award Management (SAM) website. The information on the new agency provided to EIA should match the information on SAM.

The new agency will also need to register with FedConnect and with the Automated Standard Application for Payments (ASAP) program to ensure that they can receive their annual SHOPP disbursements.

If this change occurs during the SHOPP season, States are encouraged to transfer funds for that annual cycle between State agencies, as making changes can delay access to SHOPP grant funds for the new agency. In either case, the SHOPP Survey Manager, Marcela Rourk, should be made aware of the situation as soon as possible.

Q11: Who do I contact regarding Grant questions?

Marcela E. Rourk
SHOPP Survey Manager
Office of Energy Statistics
U.S. Energy Information Administration
(202) 586-4412