March 12, 2009

New Mexico to Receive more than $58 Million in Recovery Funding for Energy Efficiency and Weatherization

New Mexico House Delegation Says Investment Will Save Families Money, Create Jobs

Washington, DC – Today, Congressmen Ben Ray Luján, Harry Teague and Martin Heinrich hailed the announcement, by President Obama and The U.S. Department of Energy, of more than $58 million in funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for energy efficiency and weatherization. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, New Mexico is set to receive $26,855,604 for the Weatherization Assistance Program and $31,821,000 for the State Energy Program—a total of $58,676,604 for the state. The funding, will support common sense efforts to reduce energy consumption and improve energy retention—including installing insulation for homes and businesses and modernizing large appliances such as air conditioners and heating units.

“Improving energy efficiency and weatherizing homes and buildings will save families money, create jobs, and help us move toward energy independence,” said Rep. Luján. “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is already making important investments that will help grow a clean energy economy and help our nation at a time when we need it most. ”

“This funding will put people to work, save New Mexicans money on their energy bill, and move us toward energy independence,” said Rep. Heinrich.

“Controlling energy costs and becoming more energy efficient are important steps toward energy independence,” said Rep. Teague. “The weatherization funding and energy efficiency grants provide a fast, cost effective way to give southern New Mexico’s families some relief on their energy bills while creating jobs at a time when our community needs it most.”

According to the White House, the Department of Energy’s Weatherization Assistance Program allows low-income families to reduce their energy bills by making their homes more energy efficient, reducing heating bills by an average of 32% and overall energy bills by hundreds of dollars per year. 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 – or 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 or other energy saving improvements, development of renewable energy projects for clean electricity generation and alternative fuels, promotion of Energy Star products, efficiency upgrades for state and local government buildings, as well as for other innovative state efforts to help save families money on their energy bills.

To learn more about programs that benefit New Mexico in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, read the New Mexico Delegation’s Recovery Resource Guide or visit the New Mexico’s Recovery Web site.