In 1997 the Montana legislature passed an electric deregulation law that included language establishing a Universal Systems Benefits (USB) fund.
USB programs were established, in part, to ensure continued funding of low-income energy assistance. Upon passage of that bill, Energy Share started working with utility companies and electric cooperatives to operate USB bill assistance, furnace safety and weatherization programs. Additionally, some companies contribute USB funds to the Energy Share Endowment to ensure funding will be in place to help meet the future heating needs of low-income Montanans.
Utility companies (both natural gas and electric), electric cooperatives and large electric users who have in the past or currently contribute USB funds to Energy Share include: