We recently received word from the Department of Energy regarding federal stimulus energy funds. Larry Persily from Representative Mike Hawker’s office provide the following information.
The Department of Energy has replied to the Legislature and given the state until Sept. 30 to formally request the $28 million in energy-efficiency funds available to Alaska under the State Energy Program component of the federal economic stimulus act. The original deadline for states was May 12. The department had agreed to allow Alaska more time to apply, pending a potential legislative override of the governor’s veto of the funding, but the department later decided it would not wait until the Legislature reconvenes in 2010. The department in early July suggested July 30 as its deadline for legislative action to override the governor’s veto, but I politely explained to them that was an unrealistic deadline and they needed to take another look at the calendar. We settled on Sept. 30. Obviously, the Aug. 10 special session gives the executive branch plenty of time to meet the new deadline if the Legislature votes to override the appropriation veto.
The Department of Energy also agreed to accept a legislative resolution in lieu of gubernatorial certification to request the energy-efficiency funds, though it appears such action may not be required with the new governor.
The last paragraph on the first page of the letter (attached) is the department’s bureaucratic way of saying the Legislature does not need to adopt a statewide energy code to obtain the funds, but rather the state can qualify by simply promoting, encouraging and assisting those municipalities with building code authority that may want to adopt improved energy-efficiency standards.