Members of Congressional Delegation Announce $87 Million in Weatherization Funding and Energy Efficiency Grants for Arkansas
Federal Funds Provided by New Economic Recovery Bill
U.S. Senators Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor and U.S. Representatives Marion Berry, Vic Snyder, and Mike Ross today announced the release of $87 million in weatherization funding and energy efficiency grants for Arkansas. The funds come from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which was created to support investments in energy independence, promote a clean energy economy, and create jobs.
"This money will help many Arkansas families improve their homes using energy-efficient materials and methods. These improvements will not only help families save money on their monthly energy costs, they will also support economic development in our state. This is the type of investment in Arkansas that I had in mind when I supported the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act earlier this year," said Lincoln.
"Investing in green will get us out of the red," said Pryor. "I am pleased the economic recovery package provides significant funding for programs to help Arkansas families make ends meet through energy conservation and efficiency."
"By increasing energy efficiency in our homes and businesses, we reduce our dependence on foreign energy sources but most importantly we are saving money," said Berry. "During this economic downturn, anything that can be done to help Arkansas families keep more money in their pockets is a top priority and this provision in the Recovery Act will help families make these cost effective changes."
"Making our country more energy independent is both a national security and economic issue," said Ross. "We must reduce our dependence on foreign oil by making our nation more energy efficient and by investing in alternative and renewable sources of energy. I am proud to help announce these public investments because they will create green, sustainable jobs in the short term and save homeowners and taxpayers money in the long term."
"Investing in long-term energy efficiency upgrades and weatherization are valuable ways to save energy and money," said Snyder. "These funds will make a real difference for Arkansas by providing resources to help low-income families better heat and cool their homes, as well as be proactive in making our future more energy-efficient."
The funding will support weatherization of homes, including adding more insulation, sealing leaks and modernizing heating and air conditioning equipment. The Weatherization Assistance Program will allow an average investment of up to $6,500 per home in energy efficiency upgrades and will be available for families making up to 200% of the federal poverty level, approximately $44,000 a year for a family of four.
The State Energy Program funding will be available for rebates to consumers for home energy audits and other energy saving improvements. In addition, funding will be used for the development of renewable energy projects for alternative fuels, promotion of Energy Star products, efficiency upgrades for state and local government buildings, and other innovative state efforts to help save families and businesses money on their energy bills.