“At a time of economic crisis, this bill provides an important tool for rural electric cooperatives to create energy efficiency options for their customers and keep money in their pockets.
“Senate Bill 39 would allow rural utilities to use graduated rates for increased energy consumption by residential customers and allows a cooperative utility to use a community energy fund for energy efficiency, energy conservation, and weatherization purposes.
“Energy efficiency is the cheapest, cleanest source of new energy—and instead of calling for costly and polluting new coal plants, it makes far more sense to focus on smarter and more efficient energy use.
“Today’s vote shows that cooperatives that have a commitment to helping their customers make smarter energy choices will better our environment and economy.
“It’s clear that developing the New Energy Economy is central to rebuilding the state’s economy. Already, renewable energy and energy efficiency has created tens of thousands of jobs and billions in new investments. The New Energy Economy can rebuild our economy while cutting global warming pollution and increasing our energy security. Investing in the New Energy Economy puts our best and bright minds at work to create new and innovative sources of energy.
“Energy efficiency programs for rural communities can be a boon by putting thousands of dollars back into the pockets of customers, dollars which can be re-invested in the local economies. At the national, state, and local level we put a Green Recovery at the forefront of the agenda.
“We commend Holy Cross and Delta-Montrose Electric Association for their leadership on this issue, and are excited to continue to work with them and Colorado Rural Electric Association to help expand and improve rural efficiency programs across the state.”