February 23, 2017
The Missouri Energy Efficiency Investment Act, approved in early 2016, allowed energy efficiency benefits geared toward owners of low-income and affordable housing. The problem is that owners of about 57,000 low-income housing units are prohibited from using the subsidies if they are collecting Missouri’s Low Income Housing Tax Credits.
In an effort to deal with the prohibition, the Missouri General Assembly is examining two bills. One deals with a tax-credit issue. The other is an omnibus energy bill that is large – and contentious.
Though the multifamily efficiency programs can cut gas bills by 30% and electric bills by 15%, such programs tend to be difficult to implement, especially among lower-income housing. One reason is the “split incentive” problem. Tenants won’t make efficiency investments on properties they don’t own. Owners don’t have motivation to reduce renters’ utility bills. And, when building owners pay the utility bills, tenants tend to use more energy.
For comments, questions or concerns, please contact Amy Sorter