CaliforniaFIRST Program Available to Carlsbad Residents

If you have always wanted to do more to help the environment and make your home more efficient, but weren’t sure how, here is your opportunity. Residents of Carlsbad are now eligible to participate in the CaliforniaFIRST program, allowing them to make energy efficient improvements to their homes and businesses.

On February 23 the Carlsbad City Council approved the City’s participation in the voluntary program, which is open to owners of residential, commercial and industrial properties. Owners can obtain low-interest financing to make energy efficient improvements to their properties, such as installing solar energy systems. The loans would be paid off by an assessment on the tax bill of the property owner.

Carlsbad is one of a handful of cities singled out to participate in the program’s inception, which eventually is targeted to spread to other cities across the state. It is funded by state bonds, and the City of Carlsbad is contributing $15,000 toward the startup costs of the program, which will be reimbursed through state grants.

Aside from solar electric and water heating systems, energy efficient improvements include tankless water heaters, dual-paned windows and insulation. Owners will apply and obtain an assessment to determine which improvements are needed to make the property more energy efficient.

To be eligible for funding under the program the improvements must be permanently fixed to the property. Application fees will be no more than $300, and financing limits on improvements will be $5,000 minimum and $75,000 maximum, with repayment terms set at 10, 15, or 20 years depending on the life of the improvement. Applications will begin being accepted in July on the City’s website. Visit http://www.CarlsbadCA.gov.

Carlsbad is once again on the cutting edge of improvements to the quality of life in California, and as always, is the greatest place to live.

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