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Loan program aims to make Wyoming County a ‘Clean Energy Community’

WARSAW – A new initiative aims to make Wyoming County a clean energy community.

The county’s Board of Supervisors approved a resolution Tuesday to set a public hearing next month for a new local law that would establish an energy loan program. This law would help eligible community entities improve their energy savings.

The law would be one more step toward Wyoming County becoming an official New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Clean Energy Community.

This movement comes from the federal government’s Property Assessed Clean Energy program that was implemented under former President George W. Bush.

“We’re doing it because this is an economic development initiative done by the state,” said Wyoming county Planning Director Bill Daly, “The state want to encourage building owners, property owners, businesses to upgrade their properties and create energy savings.”

He added that these loans are not available for residential property owners – the money is geared for large-scale projects.

“These would be very significant renovations to buildings that would create energy savings,” Daly said.

The improvements can include lighting, energy efficient windows, new furnaces, or adding solar panels to the roof or a wind turbine to the property – those kinds of concepts.

One key detail of the loan is that it is based on the value of the property and is paid back through the property tax bill. The arrangement advantageous because, according to the PACE website, it allows loans to be secure with the money paid back at low interest rates over a long period of time.

“The Board of Supervisors see this as another tool that’s available to businesses and various entities that own buildings in the community that will allow them to upgrade and become more energy efficient energy savings,” Daly said.

The public hearing for the law will be at the next Board of Supervisors meeting at 2:30 p.m. on March 14.

A full explanation of the law can be found at wyomingco.net.