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Home Local Maryland Government Announcement Originally published August 04, 2011

LT. GOVERNOR BROWN ANNOUNCES additional funds available to Provide marylanders UP TO 50% OFF HOME energy efficiency upGRades



Program exceeds expectations by spurring nearly $3 million in private investment; will receive an additional $850,000 in funding

University Park, Md (August 4, 2011) — Today, Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown announced that the Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) has authorized an additional $850,000 in funding for the popular Home Performance Rebate program. The program offers a 35% rebate (up to $3,100 total) toward qualifying home efficiency upgrades, which combined with the existing rebates of 15% provided by Maryland utilities, allows Marylanders to reduce the cost of upgrading their homes by as much as half.

The rebate program, launched earlier this year, has exceeded expectations by spurring nearly $3 million of private investment in home energy efficiency upgrades in just seven months. The additional funds announced today are expected to drive more than $1.5 million in additional investment in energy efficient home improvements.

“Governor O’Malley and I are focused on efforts to protect our natural resources and make Maryland a leader in energy innovation,” said Lt. Governor Brown. “By investing in home energy efficiency, we are helping Marylanders save money through lower electricity bills, protecting our environment through reduced energy demand, and stimulating millions of dollars in private investment in our growing innovation economy."

The announcement came as Lt. Governor Brown toured a home in University Park currently undergoing upgrades made possible by the program and viewed demonstrations of various efficiency upgrade techniques.

“Thanks to Maryland’s Home Performance program, we were finally able to upgrade our home so that it’s more comfortable and more affordable,” said Julie Ainsworth, one of the homeowners who hosted today’s event. “Investing in your home can be really stressful, but this program made it so easy. I’m glad to hear that even more Marylanders will be able to take advantage of the opportunity.”

To date, the Maryland Home Performance Rebate program, funded entirely by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, has helped nearly 1,000 Marylanders upgrade their homes with an average rebate of $1,529. The additional $850,000 also stems from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and was made available due to savings in administrative costs.

“I would like to thank Maryland’s Congressional Delegation for making these additional funds, and the entire rebate program, possible through their support for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act,” said Brown.

The Home Performance Rebate program can be used to hire a Maryland Home Performance contractor to complete a number of qualifying home energy efficiency upgrades, including: whole-house air sealing; duct replacement; and insulation of walls, attics, crawl spaces, and basements. Each of these upgrades will help to keep homes more comfortable in extreme weather, and save homeowners money by lowering their energy bills throughout the life of the investment.

In addition to the up to 50% rebate, individuals who need assistance in financing a home energy efficiency investment may be able to take advantage of unsecured home energy improvement loans for up to $20,000 at 6.99%. Loans for high efficiency equipment, such as air conditioners or water heaters, are also available at 9.99%. The loans are being offered by the Maryland Clean Energy Center, with grant support by MEA, and help alleviate the up-front costs associated with whole-house energy efficiency upgrades.

"By taking advantage of these rebates, Marylanders have made a smart choice that will save real money on the monthly bills for years to come," said Malcolm Woolf, Director of the Maryland Energy Administration. "I'm thrilled that we're able to redirect an additional $850,000 into this extraordinary program, and hope that anyone who has been considering making an investment in their homes will take advantage of this limited opportunity."

To apply for a rebate, residents should visi www.energy.state.md.us/homeperformance to complete the requisite forms. Homeowners can find participating contractors at www.mdhomeperformance.org.