NEW HAMPSHIRE TO RECEIVE ADDITIONAL $4 MILLION FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROJECTS

Shaheen successfully urged Energy Secretary Chu and Energy Dept. to correct error that deprived New Hampshire counties of Recovery Act funding

September 03, 2009

(Washington, D.C.) - U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen announced today that every county in New Hampshire has won its appeal to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to receive additional funding for energy efficiency and conservation projects through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The last outstanding appeal, for Carroll County, was approved today and every county in the state will now receive additional funds.  Shaheen successfully fought to reverse a DOE decision that erroneously excluded New Hampshire counties from the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program earlier this year, which will bring an additional $4 million to New Hampshire for energy efficiency projects.

"Investing in energy efficiency creates jobs and will cut costs for consumers," said Shaheen. "I'm pleased that the Department of Energy and Secretary Chu have awarded New Hampshire counties the funding they deserve, and I urge DOE and each county to work together so they money can be put to use before the winter."

"We are very pleased that additional critical resources will be coming to our counties, which will allow energy efficiency projects and programs to help reduce energy costs to move forward," said Joanne O. Morin, director of the NH Office of Energy and Planning. "These funds will help to stimulate economic development in these growing energy services and industries."

When ARRA passed into law, the DOE issued an erroneous ruling that New Hampshire counties were not eligible for funding under the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program because they have "relatively few responsibilities." On April 17, Shaheen wrote to Energy Secretary Chu to ask that the decision be reversed. Shaheen also worked with DOE, Secretary Chu, and county leaders in New Hampshire to illustrate that New Hampshire counties do have significant responsibilities and should not have been excluded.

In June, thanks to Shaheen's efforts, DOE announced a formal process through which New Hampshire counties can appeal the ruling and receive the funding they deserve. With the counties set to receive a total of $4,742,000, the total EECBG program funds coming to New Hampshire has been increased by almost 40 percent, from $12.5 million to more than $17 million. Earlier allocations included $9,593,500 for state and local communities and an additional $2,929,400 for the state's ten highest-populated cities and towns. The estimated total per county is:

County

 Est. Amount

Rockingham

 $    1,960,000

Hillsborough

 $       630,900

Merrimack

 $       428,200

Grafton

 $       378,000

Cheshire

 $       326,700

Strafford

 $       250,000

Belknap

 $       257,000

Carroll

 $       200,000

Sullivan

 $       175,400

Coos

 $       138,000

Total

 $    4,744,200

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