LI Lawmakers Push Green Loans Program for Nassau County
Making Alternative Energy the New Defense Industry For LI
Nassau County Legislator Dave Denenberg (D-Merrick) joined State Assembly members Steve Englebright and Michelle Schimel on the campus of Farmingdale State College to support State legislation that would enable municipalities to establish a Green Loans Program. This program would provide financing to residential property owners for solar and wind energy generating systems. The original State legislation did not include a provision for counties to run such a program. Senator Craig Johnson, at the request of Legislator Denenberg, was able to suggest an amendment to the bill to include counties. Assembly member Englebright is the lead sponsor of the Assembly bill.
The Green Loan Program would grant residential property owners 20 years to pay back a fixed loan rate set when the loan is obtained. This program is designed to dramatically increase the number of homeowners able to afford solar and wind energy generating systems creating an alternative energy market on Long Island. For example, residents would no longer need to outlay $25,000 for solar panels and negotiate to obtain financing and energy credits. The county, through grants or a bond, would provide the funds at a set interest rate. The resident would pay back the loan through taxes over 20 years. The new market would create a need for alternative energy manufacturing plants, and green collar jobs on Long Island making alternative energy the new defense industry for Long Island.
Legislator Denenberg said, “Nassau County promotes the use of alternative, environmentally friendly forms of energy by the county and its residents but financing has always been a hurdle for the average homeowner. The Green Loans Program would motivate them to consider solar energy options by offering consumer friendly type of loan.”
Assembly member Steven Englebright thanked Legislator Denenberg for taking the lead in bringing this vital program to the forefront of environmental issues confronting Long Island. Assembly member Englebright said this program will enable homeowners to choose alternative energy sources such as wind and solar which will help us become less dependent on foreign oil.
The Nassau County Legislature is expected to pass a Home Rule Message when they convene on August 10th. The Home Rule Message shows the County’s full support behind the state legislation.
Nassau County Legislator Dave Denenberg (D-Merrick), right, held a press conference to announce his success in suggesting an amendment
be added to the State legislature's Green Loans Program bill that will now include counties. He was joined by, from left,
State Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel, State Assemblyman Steve Englebright, and Kevin Macleod, Solar Energy Industries Association.