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Green Building

Corporation setting the PACE to bring clean energy financing to owners

Energy efficiency and renewable energy is getting the attention of municipal and county leaders across Westchester and the Mid-Hudson Valley as a means to saving property owners money while creating local jobs and increased economic activity.

In the past year, Energy Improvement Corporation (EIC) has seen its membership double as municipal leaders bring Energize NY’s energy efficiency and finance programs to their commercial property owners.

Energize NY Finance, no background-11

Beth Smayda, a member of the White Plains Common Council, explained that joining the EIC and offering Energize NY Finance to White Plains commercial building owners “benefits White Plains by reducing energy usage and our carbon footprint, preserving and improving building stock while reducing operating costs, keeping energy dollars in the community, and creating jobs through the installation of energy improvements.”

With over 15 members and dozens in process, EIC promotes, supports and finances clean energy projects in the commercial sector through its Energize NY programs.

Through the Energize NY Finance program, EIC is transforming the market for comprehensive clean energy projects by offering innovative PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) financing to commercial and not-for-profit property owners.

EIC is one of the leading providers of energy efficiency financial products in the United States, and NY Green Bank provided EIC with a letter of credit that enables EIC to offer the commercial PACE financing platform throughout New York. “EIC’s Energize NY PACE program is transformational in that it will greatly broaden the availability of capital for energy savings and clean energy generation projects for commercial buildings across New York,” said Alfred Griffin, president of the NY Green Bank.

Unlike traditional financing, PACE financing is not dependent upon the credit of a borrower and instead is based on the property’s ability to repay.

Repayments are made through a charge on the property tax bill (like an assessment) over the term of the financing.

If the property is sold, the financing is automatically transferred to the new property owner, along with the energy savings made to the property.

This allows property owners to do deep energy improvements they might otherwise forestall if they were uncertain about how long they would own the property.

Working with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), EIC began accepting applications for Energize NY financing in 2014.

The partnership expands innovative clean energy project financing to all of New York State for commercial, industrial and multifamily buildings to help them become more competitive and cost effective by decreasing their energy costs.

Energize NY Finance enters 2015 with a healthy pipeline of potential PACE financing projects for energy efficiency and solar energy projects ranging from commercial and industrial properties to multi-family housing.

Financing is available for properties located in EIC member municipalities and counties for up to 10 percent of the property value to fund improvements such as efficient lighting, on-site solar electric, smart controls, boiler conversion, new chillers, energy storage, insulation, efficient heating or cooling, or combined heat and power systems.

To qualify for financing, clean energy projects must show a projected energy savings that exceeds the annualized cost of the project including the financing cost. Qualifying building types include all commercially owned properties and properties owned by not-for-profits.

Applications for Energize NY financing can be found at  www.EnergizeNY.org. along with a list of EIC’s current members.

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