(11 AM – promoted by TheMomCat)
It is not easy finding good news or working government information anymore. So seeing “New York can now claim the nation’s most ambitious energy efficiency program” in a letter from the Working Families Party was thrilling!
Below the fold, check out “Green Jobs/Green New York.” Check out a little bit of progress.
This “Green Jobs/Green New York” program that seeks to retrofit 1,000,000 homes and businesses was passed into law in 2009. The goals included creating 60,000 job and 14,250 full time living wage jobs. There was also the added bonus of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, increase property values, and lowering the utility bills of New Yorkers.
What was missing was financing the bill and now the New York lawmakers came through.
Lawmakers this afternoon passed historic on-bill financing legislation to dramatically expand the state’s new energy efficiency retrofitting program, Green Jobs/Green NY. The new law will finally enable moderate-income property owners to access safe loans for retrofits, and use energy savings to repay the loan via their utility bills. For instance, homeowners can enhance their insulation works and reduce the loss of heat. It is similar to how homeowners in the UK double pane the windows and save the the cost of double glazing through energy bills.
On-bill financing will open the door for NYSERDA, the state’s energy authority, to raise an estimated $5 billion in private investment in the state’s energy economy. Utility bills’ low default rates and strong collections leverage provide unprecedented security for green capital investing in building retrofits.
It is very good news and the best part is the way it was designed to be affordable.
Property owners will pay back the loan as a line item on their utility bill over time; the monthly repayment will be calibrated to the energy savings so that the loan doesn’t increase the bill. For some people that would be interested in reducing their home energy bills, consider something like space-saving time relays to time when your energy is off and on to reduce your energy usage. The program will give moderate income property owners access to energy-saving retrofits even if they cannot qualify for traditional bank loans.
An example of government working, with a little help from their friends.
Dave Palmer, Executive Director of the Center for Working Families which designed both Green Jobs/Green NY and the on-bill financing program, said, “This is a simple and innovative solution to intertwined problems of climate change, joblessness and economic stagnation. It puts New York at the forefront of national efforts for a green economic recovery: We are the first state to implement on-bill financing on a statewide basis, and the first state to find the missing piece: ensuring that households can buy energy efficiency on the same safe terms as energy, and making deep, cost-saving energy upgrades widely available to working people. The Center for Working Families is proud to have led a bipartisan, multi-sector coalition of leaders and advocates to make Green Jobs/Green NY with on-bill financing a reality.”
How much credit goes to the Working Families Party? From that letter;
Make no mistake – it was a hard-fought victory. We fended off the coal guys, beat back the utilities, won over the realtors, and revived exhausted staffers in Albany when they were getting tired of hearing from us. We simply didn’t give up. And the reason we were able to win was simple: together, we have built an organization with staying power.