Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Energy
Department of Energy
Previous Comment     Next Comment     Back to List of Comments
9/16/22  5:04 pm
Commenter: Barbara Allen


I currently reside in Alexandria, VA.  First, I want the committee to recognize that affordable housing in our area is seriously lacking, despite the fact that several churches and non-profit organizations have stepped up and are currently developing affordable housing units.  Virginia RGGI funds are being used to build even more energy efficient affordable housing units than would otherwise be feasible with existing funding. 

Secondly, weatherization reduces energy consumption, lowers energy bills for low-income households, and creates a healthier and safer living environment.  Weatherization can save Virginia families an estimated $976 on electricity bills each year.  Virginia has long backlogs of eligible households whose weatherization upgrades cannot be completed until certain repairs have been made--problems like leaky roofs or faulty wiring.  These "deferred" clients, who are already struggling to make ends meet, often cannot pay for the repairs meaning the efficiency upgrades will never happen.   Virginia's RGGI funds are being used to fill this gap--allowing these repairs to be made so that federal funds can then be used to complete the energy saving weatherization measures.  This is the only source of funding available for this use.

Thirdly, Communities all across the Commonwealth are being impacted by flooding, and Virginia's RGGI proceeds represent the first dedicated stream of state funding to help localities prevent and protect against the significant damage it causes.  Flooding is the most costly and common natural disaster in Virginia, and there is a huge need to invest in helping localities prevent damage from this growing threat.

In the initial round of grants announced in October 2021, 19 projects were awarded funding at a total of $7.8 million.  In the second round of grants announced in December 202, the state awarded $24.5 million across 30 different projects, greatly expanding the communities that are benefitting directly from RGGI funds.  The Alexandria community has received some of the funding for which we are extremely grateful. 

For the above reasons, I am writing to request that Governor Youngkin and his administration provides full support to continue the RGGI initiative and other pro-fossil fuel energy recommendations. 

Thank you for allowing me to share my opinion regarding this crucial matter.

CommentID: 128771