The City of Palm Desert has announced the upcoming release of $6 million in new funding for its popular Energy Independence Program. Half of the new funds will be dedicated to loans for energy efficiency improvements with the other half reserved for loans for solar projects. The funding will be available to Palm Desert property owners who submit a completed loan application beginning Monday, February 8.
The City’s Office of Energy Management, 73-510 Fred Waring Drive, will accept applications from Palm Desert property owners on a first-come, first-served basis. Property owners can apply in person by appointment only. Applications submitted by contractors on behalf of property owners will be accepted by appointment with a limit of one application per company each day.
Applications will be reviewed by Office of Energy Management staff, with written notification of approval provided to customers when their application is officially complete. Staff will schedule appointments with customers whose applications are complete to review and discuss the loan documents and processing. If an application is deemed incomplete, notification will be sent to the property owner that they must resubmit. Resubmissions will be accepted while funds are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Since its creation by the Palm Desert City Council in August 2008, the Energy Independence Program has helped nearly 190 Palm Desert residents and businesses get more than $5 million in loans for solar panels, high efficiency air conditioning and heating systems, and other permanent energy efficiency improvements.
The program makes these energy saving measures more affordable by allowing the City to loan money to residents and businesses at competitive interest rates without the credit checks or appraisals associated with home equity and other types of personal loans. Borrowers can repay the loans over time as part of their property taxes. If the property is sold, the improvements and the outstanding loan balance can be transferred to the new owner.
The Energy Independence Program’s goal is to stimulate investment in energy efficiency and conservation, thereby decreasing energy demand, boosting power generation from renewable sources, and reducing energy costs. When combined with the City’s Set to Save program, it is part of a strategy to reduce energy consumption and demand in Palm Desert by 30 percent over five years.
Applications are available at the Office of Energy Management and online at http://www.cityofpalmdesert.org/Index.aspx?page=484. To schedule an appointment and for more information, please call the Palm Desert Office of Energy Management at 760-837-0287.