Santa Rosa, CA – July 8, 2020 – The County of Sonoma’s financing program, Sonoma County Energy Independence Program (SCEIP), has been approved for an interest rate reduction from 7% to 5.99%. The program has funded thousands of projects since 2009, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing jobs countywide. Earlier this year, the program expanded and now includes a resiliency component for property owners to fortify their buildings against disasters, ultimately reducing more emissions and further working toward climate-saving efforts.
“It is important for us as a County to be able to offer a program that helps property owners improve their buildings more affordably,” said Board of Supervisors Chair Susan Gorin. “Making improvements that will increase resiliency and assist with our climate goals is a win-win and benefits the entire community.”
Funding for the long-standing program is made possible through investments in underlying bonds by the Sonoma County Treasury and Sonoma Water. SCEIP is fully self-supported by the spread between the participant interest rate and the bond rate, requiring no general funds for lending or administration. The rate change will have a modest effect on the Treasury’s rate of return. “We have a fiduciary responsibility to choose prudent investments that are competitive relative to risk,” said Auditor, Controller, Treasurer and Tax Collector Erick Roeser. “Given current market conditions and interest rates, we have the opportunity to reduce the underlying bond rate from 3.00% to 1.99%, remain competitive with other investment options, and provide a more attractive financing option to Sonoma County property owners.”
For more information about the program and how it can be used to finance the purchase and installation of more than 100 improvements including solar panels, battery back-up technology, windows, roofing, siding, fire hardening, and earthquake safety features, call (707) 565-6470 or email GSenergy@sonoma-county.org.
About the Sonoma County Energy and Sustainability Division: The Energy and Sustainability Division promotes and delivers solutions necessary to mitigate environmental impacts and prepare for climate change.