PACE in Ohio

Background

Ohio passed PACE-enabling legislation in 2010 for renewable and energy efficiency improvements. There are multiple active commercial PACE programs in the state.

Active PACE programs

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Columbus franklin finance authority PACEThe Columbus Region Energy Fund was established in Q1 2016 and is administered by the Columbus Franklin Finance Authority. More information coming soon.

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Ohio PACE is run by the Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating energy-related economic development programs to support energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Ohio PACE, in partnership with the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority, is working with communities throughout Southwest Ohio. Commercial property owners across the region have indicated an interest in PACE and a pipeline of projects is in development.

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Launched in May 2016, NOPEC’s (Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council) PACE program offers financing of $100,000 to $500,000 for eligible energy projects.  In Ohio, commercial property owners who undertake energy efficiency or renewable energy projects can use this unique mechanism to finance those improvements.  All commercial properties, including government-owned facilities, are eligible under Ohio’s law.

Over 200 communities throughout 13 counties in northeast Ohio are eligible as NOPEC members to use the program.  NOPEC designed this program to serve its member communities as an economic and community development tool, and to serve its customers by reducing their energy costs. NOPEC’s program is designed for projects that will produce at least a 15% energy savings, based on a professional energy audit.

Borrowers are free to select qualified contractors to install their projects.   Full project financing is available for eligible costs.  These costs include audits, permits, engineering and other soft costs necessary to complete the project.  The financing term will be based on the amount borrowed, the expected energy savings and the useful life of the asset(s) financed.  Interest rates are fixed and set at the time the local community approves the owner’s petition for the assessment.

NOPEC’s program is easy to use.  Staff provide assistance through every step of the process for borrowers and community officials.  As Mayor Trevor Elkins of Newburgh Heights noted, after closing the program’s first loan, “This has been a fantastic experience and we really appreciate the assistance.  I’m hopeful other communities take advantage of this opportunity.”

Interested in learning more?  Visit NOPEC’s website at www.nopecinfo.org and click on the Commercial tab to find additional information about the PACE program.

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Toledo Lucas Port Authority PACEBuilding owners can save on energy costs while increasing the value of their investment by participating in BetterBuildings Northwest Ohio, a program of the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority. Through BetterBuildings, owners of virtually every type of building are eligible for fixed rate competitive financing to pay for 100% of the high-efficiency improvements to their buildings.
Project financing: Completed 84 projects worth $18.0 million at an interest rate between 5 and 6 percent.

Types of projects financed: The program has funded a wide variety of buildings including commercial, municipal and not for profit. Many buildings may be experiencing issues with aging mechanicals, and PACE financing can be ideal as part of a capital stack in a deep retrofit. Properties that are fairly leveraged and already securitized are also candidates for PACE financing.

Jurisdictions covered: Started in Toledo. Ohio is working on legislation that would make it easier to govern larger geographical areas to the existing PACE district – instead of having each county set up its own district. Toledo is also providing guidance to other port authorities across Ohio.

Program structure: The program is administered by the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority and was initially funded using grants under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA).

Financing model: The program follows a turnkey market, private placement pooling bond model and makes on-demand funding available in jurisdictions covered. The Port Authority created and maintains the NW Ohio Bond Fund and a revolving loan fund. The authority is able to aggregate projects using a combination of bond proceeds and its revolving loan fund. The authority financed over $30 million in energy efficiency projects, roughly $18 million of which were PACE projects.

Contact information:

Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority One Maritime Plaza Suite 701 Toledo, OH 43604-1866 Phone: 419.243.8251 Fax: 419.243.1835 eMail: [email protected]

PACE Municipalities in Ohio



Enabling legislation

Year


2010


2010


2010

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