Remember Home Star, the killer bill that would incentivize thousands of home energy retrofits across the country, reduce energy bills for struggling homeowners, put some of America’s hardest hit trades back to work, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions? The one backed by a coalition of more than 1,700 organizations including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers? (The one that’s not called “cash for caulkers” and please for the luvagod stop using that stupid, misleading name.)
The House passed the bill back in May and it’s been sitting in the Senate ever since. Homeowners are putting off retrofits, waiting to see if it will pass. Construction trades are holding off on hiring, waiting to see if it will pass. Members of the Home Star coalition now populate all 50 states and they are holding their breath, waiting.
Now the bill’s on the knife’s edge. There’s been talk of including Home Star in the Small Business Jobs Bill that’s pending in the Senate Finance Committee. A final decision about whether to do so will be made on Wednesday.
If it isn’t included, it may get caught up in the energy bill mishegas, or may not get taken up again until Fall. That would be incredibly counter-productive and short-sighted on the part of the Senate. This bill is as close to a no-brainer as will ever grace Capitol Hill, supported by left and right and of benefit to every single Congressional district. Surely if the Senate can do anything any more, it can do this.
It’s crunch time — if you’re the type to make noise, now’s the time to make it.
Get Grist in your inbox