For Immediate Release - July 10, 2012

Patrick-Murray Administration Announces Georgetown and Lancaster Eligible for $3.7 M in Clean Energy Financing

BOSTON – Tuesday, July 10, 2012 -- Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Rick Sullivan and Department of Energy Resources (DOER) Commissioner Mark Sylvia today announced the towns of Georgetown and Lancaster are eligible for $3.7 million in Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds (QECBs) financing for clean energy projects.

“Our clean energy revolution starts with communities like these who are seeking out incentives that help cut energy costs, create local clean energy jobs and reduce energy use, which protects our environment,” said Secretary Sullivan.

The Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008, enacted by Congress in October 2008, authorized the issuance of QECBs to state, local and tribal governments to finance certain types of energy projects. QECBs are qualified tax credit bonds, through which the borrower pays back the principal on the bond, and the bondholder receives federal tax credits in lieu of traditional bond interest payments. QECBs allow a project to obtain zero or very low interest financing while encouraging investment in clean energy projects.  Bond funding for the projects announced today were authorized by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).

The Lancaster financing will fund a solar PV installation on a capped landfill and the Georgetown financing will fund energy efficiency projects at municipal buildings.

“The energy efficiency and renewable energy projects financed through these bonds will benefit residents of Georgetown and Lancaster for years to come.  We hope other communities are inspired by their efforts to create local, home-grown sources of energy and to reduce energy use,” said Commissioner Sylvia.

Town of Lancaster – $1,500,000

  • The Town of Lancaster will own and operate a 502 kilowatt solar PV renewable energy system at the site-assigned parcel at the town’s capped landfill. Spanning 2.8 acres, the solar array will service a large portion of the town’s municipal energy load. Town officials estimate this project will offset approximately 75 percent of the energy use of Lancaster’s municipal buildings and save the town approximately $65,000 in annual energy costs.

Town of Georgetown – $2,217,818

  • The Town of Georgetown will implement a comprehensive energy savings performance contract to complete energy efficiency upgrades in seven municipal buildings. The buildings include two elementary schools and one middle/high school building. This project, which would include boiler and lighting upgrades, is projected to save 30 percent of overall energy consumption.

"These bonds will help Lancaster significantly reduce their energy costs and dramatically increase their use of clean energy,” said Rep. Jennifer Benson. “Using a capped landfill is an innovative way to meet their renewable energy goals and reduce energy costs. I am pleased that Lancaster is at the forefront of this effort and hope that they will serve as a model for other towns."

“I am thrilled that the Town of Lancaster has been recognized for its efforts to facilitate the development of clean energy,” said Rep. Harold Naughton. “It is important to continue to work towards new and innovative clean energy sources in the Commonwealth in order to cut costs as well as protect our environment.  I am proud that Lancaster is one of the leading communities in this effort and I look forward to working with local officials to ensure this progress will continue.”

The financing is made possible by DOER’s Green Communities Division, which administers QECBs in partnership with EEA, the Executive Office of Administration and Finance, and MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development authority. Since 2010, the program has awarded $33 million in financing to fund public and private projects in 15 communities.

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