SHAHEEN ANNOUNCES ADDITIONAL FUNDING FOR JOB CREATION, WEATHERIZATION PROJECTS

NH now able to spend remaining $11 million in weatherization funds after meeting goal for projects completed

June 18, 2010

(Washington, D.C.)- U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen, along with Assistant U.S. Secretary of Energy Cathy Zoi, announced today that New Hampshire has completed 30 percent of homes planned to be weatherized under the Recovery Act, and that the state is now able to spend the remaining $11,750,000 in Recovery Act funding to complete weatherization projects.  New Hampshire is one of 12 states eligible to receive the additional funding after having met its initial goal for weatherization projects.  As of May 31, 985 homes had been weatherized in New Hampshire using funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), creating 110 jobs in the first three months of this year alone. 

"Weatherization projects are among the most efficient and cost-effective ways to conserve energy and create jobs and I am delighted that New Hampshire is being recognized for its strong record of success with these projects," said Shaheen.  "This additional support for weatherization projects will help local businesses stay afloat during this difficult economic climate, while reducing our dependence on fossil fuels and lowering energy bills for New Hampshire families."     

New Hampshire ranks among the most efficient states in the country for putting weatherization assistance to work, according to a report from the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Energy.  Out of a total of 2,609 housing units which have been targeted for weatherization, the state met and exceeded a 30 percent completion rate by April of this year and is now eligible to receive additional weatherization assistance.

"What we see here today is states like New Hampshire moving forward aggressively with the weatherization program, delivering energy, and cost savings for the families who need it most. This Recovery Act funding is helping to create jobs in local communities while putting America on the path to a clean energy future," said Zoi.

"Receiving Recovery Act assistance has had a tremendous impact on New Hampshire's Low-Income Weatherization program in so many ways.  We've been able to reach more homes, which is so important when there are thousands of individuals and families on our waiting lists," said Nancy Gamble, Weatherization Program Manager for the New Hampshire Office of Energy and Planning.  "The Training and Technical Assistance funding has allowed over 100 people to be trained in energy auditing, insulating, and air-sealing, skills that will help develop New Hampshire's burgeoning green economy."

Shaheen and Zoi announced the additional funding following a tour of Manchester resident Jacqueline Doyon's home, which was weatherized in November 2009.  Doyon has since seen significant reductions in her energy usage thanks to improvements such as a new heating system and attic insulation. 

"I feel very fortunate to have been chosen for the weatherization program," said Doyon.  "My home heating costs have gone down significantly since the attic was insulated and the new furnace was installed.  It was an honor to have Senator Shaheen and Assistant Secretary Zoi visit my home today to see the improvements."

Weatherization saves families an average of $437 in heating and cooling costs every year at current prices, and reduces energy consumption for the average family by 35 percent.  Weatherization decreases national energy consumption by the equivalent of 24.1 million barrels of oil annually.  New Hampshire received nearly $24 million for the Weatherization Assistance Program through the Recovery Act.  It is estimated that for every $1 million invested in weatherization, 52 jobs are saved or created. 

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