The Air Conditioning Contractors of America is urging members contact House lawmakers and ask them to speed up the depreciation schedule for HVAC equipment as part of a $150 billion economic stimulus package.

The U.S. House of Representatives is expected today to pass bills designed to shore up the economy by putting money into the pockets of taxpayers. Under an agreement negotiated by the White House and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Americans are to receive rebate checks of $600 for singles and $1,200 for married couples, with an additional $300 rebate per child for families. The agreement also includes tax incentives for businesses to buy machinery and equipment.

In an e-mail Monday to members, ACCA lobbyist Charlie McCrudden asked them to tell members of Congress to add the Cool and Efficient Buildings Act to the package. Sponsored by Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.), the bill would cut the depreciation schedule for commercial HVAC equipment to 20 years from the existing 40 years.

Federal law allows building owners to take an annual tax deduction for equipment wear and tear. Existing policies requires commercial equipment deductions to be spread out over four decades. Speeding up the schedule would increase cash flow and could spur new investment in higher-efficiency heating and cooling equipment, boosting the national economy, McCrudden said.