Indiana state senators this week voted to shut down the state’s energy efficiency program – Energizing Indiana. The Indiana house of representatives already had passed the bill, which now sits on the governor’s desk. The IndyStar reports that it’s unknown whether the governor will sign Senate Bill 340 into law.
The legislation will let utilities off the hook for offering energy efficiency programs.
Energizing Indiana pays energy auditors to visit homes and businesses and recommend ways to reduce energy. The program was only recently launched in 2012 and mandates that utilities reduce energy consumption by 2 percent every year through 2019.
The state’s utilities lobbied heavily for passage of the bill, reports the Indy Star, which says the program is funded by a fee on electricity bills that costs most homeowners about $2 to $3 a month but costs some big industries millions of dollars a year.
Opponents of the bill include the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy and the Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute, along with businesses including Honeywell, General Electric, Siemens and Johnson Controls.
A blog posting by the ACEEE said, “The initial momentum of the sneak attack and the votes cast early in the game made it impossible to stop the bill in the legislature.”