There isn’t much time left before Congress adjourns for the fall; the target date for closing up shop in D.C. is Oct. 8. Then, of course, they’re all heading home to stump for your vote on Nov. 2.

But until then, our representatives sure seem to be keeping busy. Here’s a brief overview of some of the action on the Hill that has the potential to affect the HVAC industry.

Small Business Bill: The Senate passed the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act of 2010 last week, and the House is expected to approve it this week. This bill includes an increase in the Section 179 Expensing Limits through 2011 and an extension of the expired “bonus depreciation” allowance for 2010. To learn more about how this bill could aid your business, I recommend Charlie McCrudden’s great overview on the ACCA site: www.acca.org/blog.php?id=584.

Call for 25C Extension: Everyone’s familiar with the 25C tax credits available to homeowners who install high-efficiency systems. These credits will expire on Dec. 31 of this year, but some in the industry are calling for an extension. HARDI is leading the charge on this front; learn more at: www.wholesaleobservations.blogspot.com/2010/09/hardi-launches-industry-nation-wide.html. I’ll also be writing more about this topic in the next issue of The NEWS.

Rural Star Bill: Last week the House passed The Rural Energy Savings Program Act, commonly known as Rural Star. If also passed by the Senate, this bill would create a lending program to provide low-interest financing for a wide range of weatherization and energy efficiency improvements. It’s different from the Home Star program (that has stalled in the Senate) because this bill authorizes loans, not rebates. This blog has a good overview of the Rural Star program: www.www.mytimesdispatch.com/index.php/virginiapolitics/rural_star_legislation_passes_the_house/.

Energy Bills, Etc.: For an interesting look at other energy measures which might be brought to the table after the elections are over, check out this New York Times article: www.nytimes.com/gwire/2010/09/13/13greenwire-as-senate-returns-democrats-seek-action-on-ene-80957.html.