Senate Bill 13-212, co-sponsored by Senators Jones, Schwartz and Johnston and Representative Tyler, received bi-partisan support and was signed into law by Governor Hickenlooper on May 28, 2013. The bill, which is referred to most commonly as Commercial PACE (C-PACE), is an innovative way to finance energy efficiency and renewable energy upgrades to commercial buildings. Property owners who are interested in C-PACE receive 100% financing upfront and are given a longer duration for repayment than typical finance mechanisms C-PACE represents a valuable financing tool for commercial property owners, reducing a significant barrier for energy project implementation.
How it works:
C-PACE uses the existing public-sector structures of improvement and assessment districts to create a voluntary statewide district for funding energy projects. If counties choose to opt-in to the district, commercial property owners will be able to access a valuable new tool that will improve access to financing in Colorado.
A commercial property owner will first allow a property assessment to be placed on a property in order to finance energy improvements. The debt that is then issued to finance the energy improvements is secured by a property lien that is senior to all commercial liens on the property, including mortgages. The existing property tax collection system is then used to collect the debt payments from the property owner and repay the project costs.
SB13-212 dictates that a C-PACE board must be created by September 2013 that will be responsible for designing and deploying Colorado’s C-PACE program.