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PACE in CA: El Cerrito to offer program encouraging energy efficiency upgrades

EL CERRITO — Property owners who have delayed making their houses and businesses more energy efficient because of the upfront cost should soon have a way to move forward when the city begins participating in PACE financing programs.

PACE allows owners to purchase solar panels, double-paned windows, insulation and energy-efficient appliances and pay for the improvements over as long as 20 years. It also pays for such upgrades as charging equipment for electric vehicles and seismic retrofitting.

The payments are added to property tax bills which are typically paid for in two installments each year.

El Cerrito hopes to begin participating in the programs at the beginning of this summer, according to Community Development Analyst Emily Alter.

“The only requirement is that the upgrade must be affixed to the building property, so that something like low water-use landscaping wouldn’t qualify,” Alter said.

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