Stimulus Package: What's In it for You & Your Customers?

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) provides tax credits for homeowner who have energy-efficient or alternative energy equipment installed in their homes. For commercial HVAC contractors, ARRA provides billions of dollars to fund a wide variety of state and federal construction projects, and renewable energy projects.

For residential projects, the ARRA provides:

  • An uncapped 30% tax credit for the purchase of solar water heaters and geothermal heat pumps. Customers who purchase such equipment can claim a credit for a full 30% of the purchase price, regardless of the total cost.
  • A $1,500 aggregate tax credit, beginning with the date of enactment (February 17, 2009), is provided for qualified, energy efficient home improvements. The efficiency levels for split air conditioners and heat pumps have been modified to reflect the highest tier of the 2009 CEE specification. The following systems qualify:

95% AFUE gas furnaces
90% AFUE oil furnaces
16 SEER/13EER and above central air conditioners; 15 SEER/12.5 EER/8.5 HSPF split heat pumps
.82 energy factor/90 thermal efficiency gas, propane, or oil water heaters;
90% AFUE gas, propane, or oil-fired boilers.
The provision replaces the current tax incentives for these products.

For government projects, ARRA provides:

  • $9.75 billion to states for use, if they so choose, to modernize and renovate schools' heating and cooling systems.
  • $3.6 billion for Department of Defense energy efficiency projects and facility modernization.
  • $4.5 billion to the General Services Administration for conversion of federal buildings to high-performance green buildings.
  • $4 billion to the Department of Housing and Urban Development for energy retrofits for public housing
  • $510 million for energy retrofits for Native American housing programs.
  • Tax credits for the production of renewable energy are extended until at least 2012
  • Research expenses associated with renewables, conservation, and carbon capture and sequestration could result in higher credits in 2009 and 2010
  • The Department of Energy will provide grants up to 30% of the cost of installation of items such as fuel cells, solar, small wind, geothermal heat pumps, and combined heat and power systems
  • The Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy receives $21.4 billion for research, weatherization assistance, grants and other programs
  • The Department of Labor receives $750 million for job training, with significant focus on emerging industry sectors including energy efficiency and renewable energy
  • Federal agencies will receive considerable funds for retrofitting and upgrading existing facilities to meet federal energy and water use requirements and alleviate any maintenance backlogs.

Visit www.dsireusa.org/ to see the full range of state and federal incentives for renewable energy projects.

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