PACE - Property Assess Clean Energy - Financing Programs
Many ABAG member cities, towns, and counties have opted into Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing programs to benefit their constituents and communities. PACE is rapidly growing in popularity with local governments as a means for local home and business owners to finance the upfront cost of energy efficiency, water conservation, and renewable energy improvements to their properties and repay the funds via a special property tax assessment.
In an effort to help ensure consistent application of best practices considered to be critically important for local governments, ABAG has signed a Regional Collaborative Services Agreement (RCSA)with active PACE administrators in the Bay Area. The RCSA includes consumer protections and disclosures; local government risk mitigation and indemnification; co-marketing complementary energy efficiency programs; contractor and project quality assurance; and performance tracking, data, and reporting. ABAG members can sign an "ABAG Member Acknowledgement Form" for these terms to apply to PACE activities in their community.
Currently over $1.5 billion in residential PACE has been financed in California, primarily in the single family home market. Typically local jurisdictions make residential PACE available to their property owners by passing an authorizing resolution to "opt in" to a Joint Powers Authority (JPA) that has partnered with PACE providers. The JPA issues bonds and partners on legal and related matters with PACE Providers, private companies who have arranged capital to purchase the bonds, administer programs, vet and work with installation contractors, and service assessments in partnership with county tax collectors. This makes the proposition to local governments attractive since there is almost zero cost or effort required to participate.
However, since the PACE Provider's primary relationship is with the JPA, the local jurisdiction is also giving up control and oversight opportunities over PACE activities. The intent of the RCSA, as administered by ABAG, is to collaborate with PACE Providers on behalf of ABAG members to:
- Monitor PACE activities in regards to consumer protections practices
Improve program reporting and transparency
Support complementary energy efficiency efforts in local communities.
Executed by and between ABAG and PACE Providers active in the Bay Area, the RCSA now affords ABAG member jurisdictions who "sign on" an extra layer of protection for these best practices to apply to PACE activities in their communities. The providers that have "signed on" to the agreement are Western Riverside Council of Governments (HERO program), PACE Funding Group LLC in Los Gatos, Ygrene Energy Fund California LLC in Santa Rosa, CounterPointe Energy Solutions LLC (AllianceNRG Program) in Oakland, and Figtree in San Diego.