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Legislation & Public Policy Issues in Preservation     


Legislation & Public Policy Issues in Preservation
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Storm Windows Rebate for Historic Properties May Be Included in Tax Extenders Package
Historic Preservation Blog from PreservationDirectory.com - HOME STAR energy program, National Register-eligible or -listed properties
Contributed By: The National Trust for Historic Preservation's Department of Public Policy

The National Trust is spearheading efforts to include an amendment to the Obama administration’s HOME STAR energy program that would provide a rebate for the purchase of storm windows for National Register-eligible or -listed properties. Draft language has been developed with assistance from Rep. Peter Welch’s (D-VT) office that would provide a $50 rebate per storm window for a minimum of five windows under the Silver Star products part of HOME STAR. Stipulations included in the Welch-sponsored language state that there must not be a storm window previously installed and the work must be done by certified contractors. The draft provision allows up to 12 windows to be installed under the rebate. The National Trust hopes to include the storm window provisions as a managers’ amendment to the tax extenders package (HR 4213) during conference on that bill.

In a related development, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee held a full committee hearing on the Senate’s $6 billion HOME STAR legislative proposal on Thursday. In the Senate hearing, Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Richard Burr (R-NC) both referenced testimony for the record from the Congressional Research Service which was critical of the Silver Star program incentives under HOME STAR as “cream skimming” because the “relatively certain (but relatively shallow) energy savings opportunities are selected in favor of more promising but more complex and uncertain measures” which have been “documented as a challenge to efficiency retrofits in buildings.” The CRS testimony also noted that “the Silver Star rebates are simple, require no simulation or testing capabilities, require no post-installation performance documentation, and involve no risk of underperformance.” On this point, the Obama Administration’s witness, Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the Department of Energy, Catherine Zoi, was forced to admit that the administration viewed the Silver Star incentives as being weighted more towards economic stimulus than actually achieving document energy efficiency and saving when the program was being formulated.

Reprinted by permission of the Public Policy Department of the National Trust

 


Keywords: HOME STAR energy program, National Register-eligible or -listed properties

Posted: March 15, 2010
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