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Gregg Walker
Propane Education & Research Council

Propane Education & Research Council Approves 2013 Budget

WASHINGTON (October 12, 2012) — The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC), meeting last week in Colorado Springs, Colo., approved a $36 million 2013 budget that is designed to allow the Council to deliver best-in-class propane safety and training programs while developing and commercializing new end-use products that run on clean, affordable, domestic propane.

Of the budget for project and program activities, 53 percent will be devoted to research and development, 29 percent to training, and 18 percent to safety efforts.

Highlights of the 2013 Budget

Revenue    $ 33,232,000
Investment                                          $     350,000
Carry-forward funds   $   1,479,000
De-obligations    $   1,000,000
  State rebates    $   6,646,400
  Research and development   $ 10,856,000
  Training    $   3,581,000
  Safety    $   5,865,000
  Administrative   $   2,646,000
  Program labor   $   3,406,000
  Technology support   $      598,000
  Reserve    $   1,516,600
  Other expenses   $      946,000
“This is a realistic budget for a challenging market as we work in 2013 to build adoption of propane fueled products,” PERC President and CEO Roy Willis said. “Propane is a great fuel for today’s economy, offering a low-cost, highly efficient alternative fuel for fleets, commercial landscapers, and the residential and commercial building sectors.”

The opportunity for sales growth is strong in propane autogas as commercial customers and governments replace fleet vehicles that run on gasoline and diesel. Other promising markets include commercial mowing, where landscape contractors expect to expand their propane mower fleet substantially in the next few years, and irrigation, where farmers find that switching from diesel to propane reduces their operating costs and cuts their carbon emissions.

In other business:

• Council Chairman Joe Armentano, Paraco Gas (Rye Brook, N.Y.), thanked the PERC Strategic Planning Task Force for developing a draft of the PERC 2013-2015 Strategic Plan. The Council will take action on the draft plan at its December meeting, after propane industry members have an opportunity to review it and offer comments.

• The Council approved the appointment of Scott Brockelmeyer, Ferrellgas (Kansas City, Mo.), as the new chairman of the Market Outreach and Training Working Group, replacing Darin Hunhoff, CHS (Inver Grove, Minn.), who stepped down. The other two working groups that make up the PERC Advisory Committee are Research and Technology Development and Safety and Training.

• Armentano announced that he had appointed the following members to the PERC Advisory Committee: James Van Uden, R.H. Foster Energy (Hampden, Maine), David Hedrick, AmeriGas Propane (Lake Orion, Mich.), and Christopher Willis, Growmark FS (Albion, N.Y.).

• Mike Sloan, an economist with ICF International, offered an overview of the outlook for propane supply and demand in the next three years.

The Council approved the following funding requests:

Docket 16723 — Change Order for the 8.0L Engine for the Medium‐Duty Truck & Bus, $356,000
Docket 17509 — 2013‐2014 Kawasaki Dealer Outreach and Training, $243,500
Docket 18160 — Performance, Durability Validation of Propane-Diesel Dual-Fuel Retrofit, $80,000
Docket 18167 — Propane Autogas Fuel System Technical Training Program, $250,000
Docket 18202 — Customer Owned Tank Safety & Maintenance Materials, $14,650
Docket 18204 — Autogas Dispenser Training Module, $122,300
Docket 18254 — Phase 1 CETP Update, Books 5.1, 5.2, and 8.0, $246,860

The Council will next meet December 5 and 6 in Naples, Fla.

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