A blower door test is one of the many diagnostic features employed by our program to ensure the highest energy savings possible for those we serve.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Legislative Update

NASCSP has submitted it's 2008 testimony to the Senate Energy and Water Appropriation Subcommittee requesting $300 million in WAP and $75 million in SEP. These figures were echoed by several national organizations like the Alliance to Save Energy, ACEEE, NASEO and others. We expect the Subcommittee to mark-up their bill sometime in late May or early June. There has been no word from the House Subcommittee about their mark up of this year's bill, although we still expect their actions to be completed by early May.

There has been a lot of activity lately surrounding a possible supplemental Appropriations package that will include many components of the economic stimulation package that were not included in the first one (remember your $300 to $600 tax rebate). NASCSP has been promoting WAP as a viable green jobs initiative as well as a consumer of large ticket purchases in the economy (like trucks, equipment, appliances, etc.). This has been supported by many other national organizations for including WAP in the bill. We have been unable to determine whether this argument will result in additional funding for WAP. The debates are taking place now and if a bill is actually introduced, it is expected within the month.

There have been several meetings with national organizations about the pending "cap and trade" legislation being considered for the Senate floor.

There are a couple of versions being circulated to help the U.S. begin to seriously address its carbon emissions and global environmental impact.

"Cap and trade" legislation comes with a significant cost to all consumers - but a major impact on low-income families who must absorb the price increases on most commodities within their budgets. The legislation includes remedies for holding the low-income harmless from these increases through bill payment like LIHEAP, energy efficiency like WAP, and price equity like rebates on commodity purchases. NASCSP is working with many organizations to address WAP's role in this legislation. While it is too early to tell how the final bill will look, there is good support for WAP to be included as one of the remedies to help low-income families address their increased energy costs and at huge funding levels in the out years based on carbon credit auctions.

As you can see, there is a lot of ground work taking place during this time that we hope will secure the future of WAP. As always, we will keep you informed as we learn more.

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