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Legislation Signed to Facilitate Energy Improvements to Homes and Businesses

House Bill 374 Can Give Alaskans Access to Low-Cost Financing



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Governor Bill Walker signs HB 374 into law in Fairbanks.

Office of Governor Bill Walker

 

FAIRBANKS—Alaska Governor Bill Walker signed a bill into law allowing utilities in Alaska to create low-interest financing programs to help customers make energy efficiency improvement to their homes and businesses. House Bill 374, sponsored by Representative Adam Wool (D-Fairbanks), allows utilities to offer low-interest loans to customers with payments added to existing utility bills.

“The on-bill financing made possible through this legislation can be used to help Alaskans better heat their homes during the cold winter months, switch to more energy efficient appliances, and get access to alternative energy sources,” said Rep. Wool. “I believe this legislation is vitally important for the Interior Energy Project because it can be used to help Fairbanks area homeowners convert from oil to natural gas to more efficiently heat their homes. It will also improve the air quality in our region. On-bill financing has been very successful in other parts of the county, and I am confident it will work for Alaska.”

Under an on-bill financing program, utilities can loan money to customers to make any number of energy efficiency improvements. The customer would then pay off the low-interest loan through an additional line item on their utility bill.

House Bill 374 was approved by the Alaska House of Representatives in early April by a vote of 36-2. The Alaska State Senate unanimously passed the bill on May 12, the final day of the Second Session of the 30th Alaska State Legislature. Alaska Governor Bill Walker signed HB 374 into law during a bill signing ceremony in Fairbanks.

 

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