(From the office of Brian A. Joyce)
Senator Brian A. Joyce recently testified on his ambitious legislation to overhaul the lagging Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program to spur investment in the industrial and commercial business sectors while creating jobs at a hearing before the Joint Committee on Revenue in Springfield.
The bill will allow low-cost financing to industrial and commercial business owners to make energy savings upgrades to properties, which in turn will create short term job growth in the green energy economy and long term job growth as business owners reinvest energy savings into expanding their businesses.
The bill, S.177, will centralize the PACE program administration to take the burden off of individual municipalities, streamline the financial processes for business owners, meet the state’s pent up demand for commercial and industrial financing, allow credit enhancements to provide low interest rates, and more.
“The business community has come to us with a clear message that they want this program but it simply isn’t working,” said Joyce. “Reforming PACE will unlock hundreds of millions of dollars and create thousands of jobs now and in the future. We’re lagging behind the rest of the nation and failing to tap the Commonwealth’s massive potential for clean energy investment.”
In 2010, Massachusetts adopted legislation allowing the PACE program but placed the heavy burden of creating and administering the programs on municipalities. As a result, not a single project has been financed and the Commonwealth lags considerably behind the 31 other states with PACE programs. Also testifying in favor of the bill were Mass Development and the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, among others.