Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Green revenue bond issuance

Published (3/4/2010)
By Kris Berggren
Share on: 

If you want to install solar panels, energy-efficient windows or other energy-saving improvements in your home or business, but don’t have a lot of cash or home equity, a third way could become available.

HF3109, sponsored by Rep. Jeremy Kalin (DFL-North Branch), would allow cities or counties to sell green revenue bonds and offer financing for property owners of qualifying property to make energy improvements. The funds would be repaid by a special assessment that would stay with the property if sold.

The financing program would be voluntary for individual property owners, with no municipality able to establish a special energy assessment district and then require an owner to participate.

Rep. Rob Eastlund (R-Isanti), citing the foreclosure crisis, told the House Local Government Division March 1 he is concerned that such a program could inadvertently allow some homeowners to take on more repayment obligation than they can afford.

“Typically with a government agency, the ability to repay is assessed more generously,” Eastlund said. He also thinks the proposed maximum 20-year loan payback is too long, and that a shorter term could prevent long-term liability for faulty products or installation.

Kalin said there are built-in safeguards that include the bonds being taxable and that a limit on the loan amount would be the lesser of 10 percent of the appraised property value or the actual cost of the improvement.

The division approved the bill and sent it to the House State and Local Government Operations Reform, Technology and Elections Committee. Sen. John Doll (DFL-Burnsville) sponsors a companion, SF2720, which awaits action by the Senate State and Local Government Operations and Oversight Committee.

Session Weekly More...

Session Weekly Home

Related Stories

Minnesota Index: Public libraries
Figures and statistics on libraries in Minnesota.
(view full story) Published 5/13/2010

First Reading: MOEs — looking for relief
Members say unfunded mandates need to be changed
(view full story) Published 2/20/2009