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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: March 23, 2017 10:12 AM
From: Representative Kate Harper
To: All House members
Subject: Pennsylvania Property Assessed Clean Energy Program – PA PACE
Soon, I plan to introduce legislation that would establish Pennsylvania’s Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program. Currently, 33 states plus the District of Columbia authorize PACE financing for clean energy and energy efficiency projects on commercial and industrial buildings; this includes a diverse group of states such as Alabama, California, Georgia, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Texas. This legislation is similar to SB 234.

PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) is a financing mechanism that enables low-cost, long-term funding for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and water conservation upgrades to commercial or industrial properties. The upfront capital is then paid back in the form of a voluntary property tax assessment on the specific, improved building. PACE can pay for new heating and cooling systems, lighting improvements, solar panels, water pumps and insulation. It is an economic development tool that enhances property values and employment opportunities, lowers the cost of doing business, and expands the use of energy saving technologies.

A local government chooses to participate in or develop a PACE program, so the program is voluntary. PACE financing does not require any public funds, in fact general obligation debt financing is prohibited. Local communities merely collect the assessment on the improved building and remit it for payment on the debt incurred from the building’s energy-efficiency and clean energy technology upgrades.

Presently, the upfront cost of installing energy-efficient or clean energy technology can be prohibitive. This legislation provides a common sense, market-driven, and voluntary solution to this problem, without using taxpayer or ratepayer funded grants. Here is a partial list of stakeholders supporting this legislation:

AIA Pennsylvania (American Institute of Architects)
BlueGreen Alliance
Conservation Consultatnts Inc. (CCI)
Delaware Valley Green Building Council (DVGBC)
Energy Coordinating Agency (ECA)
The Efficiency Network (TEN)
The Environmental Defense Fund
Evangelical Environmental Network
First Fuel Software Inc.
Green Building Alliance
Honeywell Building Solutions
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), Third District and Locals 5, 81, 229, 712
Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance (KEEA)
MaGrann Associates
Mechancial & Service Contractors Association of Eastern PA – Greater Delaware Valley
National Electrical Contractor Association (NECA), Western PA and Penn-Del-Jersey Chapters
Natural Resources Defense Fund (NRDC)
Nature Abounds
The Nature Conservancy, Pennsylvania Chapter
Penn Future
Pennsylvania Municipal League
Pennsylvania Solar Energy Industries Association (PASEIA)
Philadelphia Energy Authority
Pittsburgh City Council
SmartWatt Energy Inc.
Solar Unified Network of Western Pennsylvania (SUNWPA)

I hope you will join by co-sponsoring this legislation.

Introduced as HB1722