May 5, 2010

Regional energy efficiency and renewable projects bill signed in Aspen

On a sunny Wednesday in Aspen, Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter signed Senate Bill 100 that was sponsored by Sen. Gail Schwartz (D-Snowmass Village) and Rep. Joe Miklosi, which will allow homeowners and businesses to obtain financing to cover upfront costs of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.

“As Colorado continues to expand our renewable energy sector, we must address the evolving needs of consumers and local communities,” said Sen. Schwartz. “Voters in Colorado continue to approve programs to finance affordable energy improvements to their homes. Innovative programs like Energy Smart Bonds will make renewable energy accessible to most Coloradans and keep Colorado leading the nation in the New Energy Economy."

Said Gov. Ritter: “Senate Bill 100 is a powerful tool for providing residential and commercial property owners the financing necessary to make efficiency and renewable energy improvements. This will reduce energy bills, expand Colorado's local economies and advance state energy goals,”

In 2008, Gov. Ritter signed House Bill 1350 which gave local districts the ability to offer financing for energy improvements. The current law prohibits local improvement districts from crossing county boundaries. SB 100 allows multiple counties to now work together to offer financing for energy improvements.

“For rural counties such as ours SB 100 is a big step toward taking the 'New Energy Economy' out of newspaper headlines and putting it to work in local neighborhoods,” said Rachel Richards, Pitkin County Commissioner. “It helps empower county governments to empower our citizens to lower their energy consumption and their energy bills - all while helping to put their own neighbors, in the hard-hit construction trades, back to work.”

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