Enacted on August 16, 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act significantly expands federal tax credits and provides funding for rebates to encourage homeowners and businesses to increase their energy efficiency and shift to qualifying electric appliances and vehicles. The federal government is expected to provide more details in 2023 about how these tax credits and rebates can be used, and Efficiency Maine will provide updates here at our website as soon as new information becomes available.
Click here for a summary of H.R. 5376 as of 10-20-2022.
In January 2021, the U.S. Congress enacted the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), a federal stimulus bill to aid, among other things, economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The plan included funding for state governments through the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF). Approximately $1 billion of the SLFRF was allocated to the State of Maine to respond to the pandemic and support economic recovery.
In May 2021, Governor Mills put forth a proposal – the Maine Jobs & Recovery Plan (MJRP) – outlining her administration’s priorities for using these funds. The Maine Legislature approved the plan in July 2021, enacting LD 1733, An Act To Provide Allocations for the Distribution of State Fiscal Recovery Funds.
The MJRP allocated $50 million to the Efficiency Maine Trust (Efficiency Maine) to accelerate weatherization upgrades for low- and moderate-income residents, and to expand energy efficiency investment among local governments, schools, community organizations, and businesses. The MJRP also allocated $8 million to the Maine Department of Transportation to expand state, municipal, and other publicly accessible electric vehicle (EV) charging stations and related infrastructure in partnership with Efficiency Maine.
In collaboration with other agencies and offices of state government, Efficiency Maine prepared a series of five initiatives that incorporate both the goals of the MJRP and the federal guidelines for uses for the SLFRF. These initiatives, each designed to assist different customer segments of the Maine economy, are listed below with links to further information about the available incentive offerings and guidance on how to participate. Efficiency Maine will post updates about future offerings on this webpage.
All ARPA funds must be committed by December 31, 2024, and expended by Dec. 31, 2026.
In November 2021, the U.S. Congress enacted the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) to support a broad range of infrastructure needs. In addition to investments in highways, transit, broadband, clean water, and electric grid renewal, the bill provides $7.5 billion to build a national network of EV chargers. Maine will receive approximately $19 million of these funds and will have the opportunity to apply for additional grant funding to expand EV charging.
Efficiency Maine will play a major role in administering the IIJA funding to expand the EV charging network in Maine, building upon the initiative that started in 2018. Efficiency Maine will continue to manage rounds of competitive solicitations, awarding grant funds for EV chargers over the next five years.
As IIJA-funded grant opportunities EV chargers become available, Efficiency Maine will post all relevant information on its Opportunities page.