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RES in HB 1117 Moves to Third Reading in Senate; HB 1280 Heard but No Action Until Wednesday February 18, 2008

Posted by Laura Arnold in Uncategorized.
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HB 1117 with the Renewable Electricity Standard (RES) language added in the Senate Utilities & Regulatory Affairs Committee hearing last week was handed down on second reading today on the Senate floor without further amendments. HB 1117 is now eligible for third reading or final passage in the Senate.

Testimony was taken this morning on HB 1280 addressing energy efficient public buildings, however, action on the bill has been deferred until Wednesday (02/20/08) at 5:00 pm. The Senate Energy and Environmental Affairs Committee received testimony on the bill and it is anticipated that amendments will be considered when the committee meets again.

The bill requires a building or structure constructed, reconstructed, repaired, altered, or retrofitted under public works contracts entered into after 12/31/08, be designed with the goal of achieving the silver rating under the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, the Green Globes Two Globes level, or an equivalent standard under an equivalent rating system that is accredited by the American National Standards Institute. The public works provisions apply to any state public work, a public work by a state agency, and state institutions. The project must have a value of more than $1 million and does not apply to structures listed or eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places or structures designed solely to store commodities or other property, such as a highway salt barn. It provides that the certificaton requirement does not apply to a public works contract entered into by a school corporation.

Following an explanation of the bill by House author Rep. Matt Pierce (D-Bloomington) the following individuals offered testimony in support of HB 1280: Bill Brown, Indiana Green Building Council; Andrew Berger, Association of Indiana Counties; Fred Mills, Indianapolis Power & Light; David Pilbrow, Indiana Friends Committee; Tim Maloney, Hoosier Environmental Council; Mac Williams, Architect; Janet McCabe, Improving Kids Environment; Paul Chase, Citizens Action Coalition; Lynn Dennis, the Nature Conservancy; Laura Arnold, Indiana Renewable Energy Association; and Carey Hamilton, Hoosier Sierra Club, Save the Dunes Council and the Izaak Walton League of America.

Opposition to the bill was lead by Ray Moistner, Executive Director of the Indiana Hardwood Lumberman’s Association (www.ihla.org) Jack Siefert, Director of the Division of Forestry with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources was asked by Committee Chair Senator Beverly Gard (R-Greenfield) to provide clarifying testimony concerning classified woodlands and cetification standards for Indiana hardwood products. Several other speakers representing the Indiana lumber industry expressed concerns with the proposed bill. Vince Griffin representing the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and Gretchen White representing the Indiana Builders Association both spoke against the mandate the bill proposes. Kevin Green representing Purdue University said Purdue is not opposed to green building efforts and stated “we are making voluntary efforts” now but would prefer removing the words “university shall”.

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