January 22, 2021
(Tallahassee, Fla.) – State Rep. Randy Fine (R-Palm Bay) today filed HB 387: Property Assessed Clean Energy Program, which details provisions that, once implemented, will serve to modernize and improve the PACE program in Florida while providing a sweeping list of updates and changes that will strengthen and standardize consumer protections for Floridians who are eligible to participate.
House sponsor Rep. Fine said, “Florida is facing an existential water quality crisis, and we need to be doing everything possible to assist property owners in reducing environmental pollutants and improving resiliency. We also need to ensure that consumers understand any property debt they are taking on, and aren’t taken advantage of by bad contractors while trying to do the right thing. That is why I am excited to be filing HB 387 – which will increase PACE access to property owners who want to improve our environment, while dramatically increasing the consumer protections for PACE assessments.”
Ygrene Chief Executive Officer and President, Jim Reinhart said, “This legislation will significantly improve an already tremendously successful policy to ensure its lasting impact and availability for years to come. It ensures PACE remains a strong, viable program by further protecting consumers, safeguarding properties, and giving homeowners peace of mind when making essential property upgrades. We look forward to continuing our important work with the Florida Legislature.”
HB 387 will build on the PACE’s successes and existing consumer protections by modernizing the industry through the standardization of disclosure requirements, strengthening of contractor enrollment, and addressing property owners’ ability to repay. Below is a summary of the legislation’s key provisions that will modernize the program.
Consumer Protections – By standardizing consumer protections, HB 387 will ensure that all Floridians are treated equally and that all industry stakeholders adhere to single set of rules that ensure compliance. These provisions include:
- Standardized Financial Disclosures, e.g., payment terms
- Live, Recorded Oral Confirmation of Terms Phone Call
- Mandatory Project Completion Certification Before Payment
- Three Day Right to Cancel
Affordability – Require PACE administrators to develop and maintain criteria and policies to affirmatively determine that a property owner can afford and reasonably be expected to pay the annual tax assessment amount that will pay for the home improvement project.
Contractor Enrollment – Establish requirements for approving and onboarding a contractor. Ensuring that contractors are licensed, bonded, and have insurance as is currently mandated through the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
Solicitation Requirements – Prohibit inaccurate statements by marketers, salespeople, or their agents about PACE financing, pricing, or the benefits of PACE-funded home improvements.
Financial Disclosures – Ensure that all property owners receive industry-standard financial disclosures, including, but not limited to, financing terms, interest rates, fees, and repayment process.
Confirmation of Terms Call – Mandate that PACE providers perform outbound calls on recorded lines to all property owners that requires acknowledgment that the property owner has received and read the disclosures to ensure the terms of their financing were properly disclosed.
Ygrene's award-winning PACE program, with built-in consumer protections, is delivering greater choice for home and business owners by providing accessible and affordable financing for energy efficiency, resiliency, renewables, water conservation, storm protection, and seismic upgrades. Recognized as one of the fastest-growing asset classes in the country, PACE has proven to be a successful tool for supporting public policy initiatives, all without the use of public tax dollars or credits. By providing over $1.9 billion of private capital to more than 550 local communities, Ygrene has created tens of thousands of jobs and invested millions into local economies across the U.S. Learn more at ygrene.com.