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Erving opts in to energy upgrade financing program

April 14, 2020 : Greenfield Recorder, by Max Marcus

ERVING — A national program for businesses to finance energy efficiency upgrades has been adopted in Erving, and is expected to become available later this spring when the program is set to launch in Massachusetts.

The program, called Property Assessed Clean Energy, allows commercial and industrial entities in Erving to finance energy upgrades on a timeline of up to 20 years with no maximum cost, so long as the projected savings in energy costs exceed the cost of the improvements.

According to Erving Administrative Coordinator Bryan Smith, the program is notable because loan payments are collected by the town during tax collection, and then forwarded to the lender. The loan is attached to the property, and would be transferred to the new owner if the property were to be sold.

“It’s a secure deal for the lender, because they know the funding will be collected,” Smith said. “The town is playing a role in supporting the process.”

The program is administered by MassDevelopment, which connects participating businesses with lenders and handles most of the paperwork, Smith said. The town’s role is only to opt in to the program and to oversee the loan payments.

Property Assessed Clean Energy was approved by the Massachusetts Legislature in 2016, and is scheduled to become available this spring. Smith said the launch is still expected to be on schedule, despite complications in most business caused by the coronavirus pandemic.