JEFFERSON CITY – Gov. Matt Blunt today launched a new program to help Missouri families conserve energy and reduce their tax burden with certified home energy audits. “Certified home energy audits will give Missouri families reliable guidance when it comes to energy use and waste reduction, saving money on overall energy costs as well as offering another tax break,” Gov. Blunt said. “Every effort to conserve energy and make environmentally-friendly choices has a positive impact on our future. As governor, I have worked to ensure that our generation leaves Missouri’s environment in better shape for our children and grandchildren with initiatives that are good for taxpayers and our air, land and water.” For the first time ever Missourians can now apply for formal certification as a home energy auditor. The certification process is the first step to providing Missouri families access to the new tax break. The Department of Natural Resources recently finalized certification requirements and guidelines and is accepting applications from Missourians who want to be certified as energy auditors under this new program. Certification of home energy auditors was included in the new law to help ensure that residents receive the most up-to-date advice and recommendations on ways they can reduce their energy consumption. Missouri taxpayers who enlist the help of certified home energy auditors will be able to qualify for the deduction beginning with the 2009 tax year. The law allows taxpayers to deduct the costs of qualified home energy audits and related recommendations from their federal adjusted gross income. More information and application forms are available through the Department of Natural Resources, [www.dnr.mo.gov/energy/residential/homeenergyaudits.htm](http://www.nachi.org/forum/www.dnr.mo.gov/energy/residential/homeenergyaudits.htm). The law also enacted Gov. Blunt’s Show-Me Green Sales Tax Holiday, pushing Missouri to the forefront of a national effort to encourage greater energy efficiency. Missouri is just the fourth state after Florida, Connecticut, and Virginia to place this forward-looking legislation into statute. The holiday will start on April 19th and end on April 25th. All sales of Energy-Star washers and dryers, water heaters, trash compactors, dishwashers, conventional ovens, ranges, stoves, air conditioners, furnaces, refrigerators and freezers, up to $1500, will be exempt from state sales tax between April 19th and April 25th. Gov. Blunt has been instrumental in identifying and employing the use of alternative energy sources in Missouri. Last year the governor announced a partnership to create renewable energy and heat using byproducts from the Jefferson City Landfill. Methane gas from the landfill is converted to electricity, and the heat created by conversion facilities is used to heat water for the state prison. The project uses resources that would otherwise have been wasted while at the same time producing benefits for the environment, the state, the prison and local communities. Gov. Blunt’s support for proactive solutions to save energy and protect the environment once implemented will both reduce energy use and save taxpayers nearly $16 million in energy costs. Initiatives include a range of projects from centralizing and monitoring statewide energy consumption to changing laundry operations at prisons. Last summer the governor signed the Green Power Initiative. The Initiative has been heralded as the most important environmental legislation passed by the state in more than a decade. It decreases pollution from energy production by encouraging an increase in the use of renewable energy sources such as wind, hydroelectricity, solar power, hydrogen and biomass. The legislation sets targets for utilities to meet: a four percent renewable energy target by 2012, eight percent by 2015 and 11 percent by 2020. The legislation also requires the Office of Administration to ensure that at least 70 percent of the new vehicles purchased for the state fleet are flex fuel and allows municipal landfills to accept yard waste in order to create bio-reactors which produce methane gas for use in energy production. Missouri is home to the only state building in the nation with a platinum rating from the U.S. Green Building Council.
This is good…and how it should be.
The State came up with a tax incentive to get homes more energy efficient.
In order to standardize the method by which the homes would be “certified” as efficient, they created a position and outlined what it entails to qualify and what tools and protocol would be used. No licensing boards or other exclusionary controls are necessary. Instead, the DNR who is already in place and funded will oversee the certification process. The certification itself, is free.
It even invites those who do not meet the standard but have other “self taught” levels of experience to apply.
Here…in the absence of special interest groups and carpetbaggers looking to exclude their competitors from market share…is a method of “certification” that enhances the job and the people who are served.
No realtors having input…no inspector associations having input…no schools or other service providers having input…just defining the need and filling it.
This is a great example to hold up against all of the other illegitimate attempts made by special interest groups to control others through the legislative process.
One way of showing that the vendors were caught by surprise is the fact that IR technology is neither recommended or listed for use in the only state with a Platinum rating from the U.S. Green Building Council.
And the underlying message: It reminds the general public that there are many reasons to have inspections other than real estate transactions.
Annual inspections should be the norm.
I thought that “licensing solves nothing”.
You thought correctly. It doesn’t.
This is a free certification. Homeowners choosing to use a certified auditor are entitled to certain tax credits.
No licensing required…and everyone is served, responsibly.
The only thing I do not care for is the grandfathering in of all the auditors but other than that it appears to be a good law.