Local municipalities may not require residents to install HVAC equipment that exceeds federally preempted standards. That is the message Judge Martha Vazquez, of the Federal District Court for the District of New Mexico, shared in her Jan. 25 ruling in AHRI v. City of Albuquerque.
The HVACR industry continues to introduce new technologies — and build upon existing technologies — that provide opportunities to improve energy efficiency. While new federal legislation hasn’t helped spur deployment of such technologies, state and local initiatives are moving ahead.
A new bill, known as the Cut Energy Bills at Home Act, has been proposed in the Senate. Senate Bill 1914 would establish a $2,000 base credit for homeowners who reduce energy use by 20 percent through the installation of energy-efficient equipment.
Imagine my surprise when I saw the December 2011 bulletin of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) with this giant headline on the cover: “How Air Conditioning, Cable News, and Thomas Jefferson Created the Mess in Washington.”
For the time being, the 25C residential energy tax credit has officially expired. Since many HVAC residential contractors used the tax credit as a selling tool, there has been a lot of discussion about how the expiration will affect the industry, and if there is any hope for an extension of the credit.
In the category of “as California goes, so goes the rest of the nation,” the HVACR industry has been closely watching the impact of what is being called “the nation’s first comprehensive regulation to reduce potent greenhouse gases from commercial and industrial refrigeration.”
Legislation repealing the 3 percent withholding tax on government contracts has been signed into law by President Obama. The legislation, H.R. 674 - 3% Withholding Repeal and Job Creation Act, also includes a provision providing tax credits to companies hiring military veterans.