NASEO Issues Actions for State, Federal, and Industry Consideration in Addressing Propane Supply and Affordability Concerns

Low propane inventories at the start of the 2013–14 winter season, coupled with cold weather in many areas of the nation, created significant challenges in meeting customer demand for propane, particularly in the Northeast and Midwest. This situation led to record price increases, limited deliveries to customers in some states, and emergency declarations by a number of governors.

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REEA Single Family Award: Tornado Assistance Program

REEA Single Family Award: Tornado Assistance Program

On February 29, 2012, tornadoes ripped through the southern tip of Illinois, taking seven lives and leaving millions of dollars in property damage in their wake. To help those in need, Governor Pat Quinn requested federal disaster aid for the five counties hit hardest by the 170 mile per hour winds. But the Federal Emergency Management Agency denied his request, saying that assistance from state and local agencies, along with volunteer groups and private insurance, would be enough. It would have to be.

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REEA Weatherization Award: Butter Brook Hill Apartments

REEA Weatherization Award: Butter Brook Hill Apartments

Between 2009 and 2011, Connecticut received $64.3 million in ARRA funds for its Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP). But it wasn’t quite enough to complete all the projects it had planned. One unfortunate casualty was the Butter Brook Hill Apartments, a four-building development in New Milford that provides independent living for seniors. New Opportunities, Inc., a Waterbury-based community action agency, was determined to complete the project.

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REEA New Construction Award: Las Abuelitas

REEA New Construction Award: Las Abuelitas

Several years ago, a delegation of grandparents raising grandchildren in Pima County, Arizona, approached the Primavera Foundation, a nonprofit specializing in affordable housing and neighborhood revitalization. The grandparents were struggling, both economically and socially, with a situation many of them didn’t expect to be in. Primavera found a way to help.

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REEA Multifamily Award: Net Zero Carey Ave Project

REEA Multifamily Award: Net Zero Carey Ave Project

For more than a decade, Charles Ruiter has worked to preserve affordable housing in the Las Vegas area. By revitalizing low-income properties with energy-efficient technology, his company, Ruiter Construction, has helped create jobs and ease the energy burdens of dozens of low-income families.

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News & Notes

Dr. James R. Schlesinger, the first head of the Department of Energy, passed away on March 27 in Baltimore. He was 85. When Jimmy Carter became president, he named Schlesinger, a Republican, as his top energy policy advisor. Schlesinger’s first task was to organize dozens of small energy agencies, field offices, and research centers into the new, cabinet-level Department of Energy.

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People on the Move

A summary of who’s in and who’s out of the nation’s top energy jobs.

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Beltway Roundup

The FY2015 appropriations season has begun in earnest. The House Appropriations Committee has begun marking up its bills, with the three easiest bills first: Legislative Branch (H.R. 4487), Military Construction–Veterans Affairs (H.R. 4486), and Commerce, Justice.

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Energy service companies (ESCOs) are often capable of doing more than they initially offer to do. In working with ESCOs over many years, on behalf of governments and governmental agencies operating energy efficiency programs, we have developed what we feel are best practices for contracting with ESCOs. Some of our experience works best in pooled financing programs where the collective procurement process gives more leverage to the governmental agency, but much of it makes sense in any performance-contracting context.

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Moving on Multifamily Efficiency: Four Tips for and from States

Wide-scale investment in multifamily energy efficiency holds the promise of extraordinary returns, including an estimated $3.4 billion annually in utility cost savings and lasting gains in economic development, job creation, home affordability, emissions reductions, and public health.

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