Local Law #3 of 2019
(passed at Year End Mtg. 12/19/2018)
A LOCAL LAW TO AMEND THE CODE OF THE COUNTY OF PUTNAM, by adding a new
Chapter 156, entitled “Energize NY Benefit Financing Program”, which establishes a
sustainable energy loan program in the County of Putnam.
Be it enacted by the County of Putnam as follows:
The Code of the County of Putnam is hereby amended by adding a new Chapter 156,
entitled “Energize NY Benefit Financing Program,” to read as follows:
§156-1. Legislative findings, intent and purpose, authority.
A. It is the policy of both the County of Putnam and the State of New York to achieve
energy efficiency and renewable energy goals, reduce greenhouse gas emissions,
mitigate the effect of global climate change, and advance a clean energy economy.
The County of Putnam finds that it can fulfill this policy by providing property
assessed clean energy financing to property owners for the installation of renewable
energy systems and energy efficiency measures. This chapter establishes a program
that will allow the Energy Improvement Corporation (“EIC”), a local development
corporation, acting on behalf of the County pursuant to the municipal agreement to
be entered into between the County and EIC pursuant to Article 5-G of the New York
General Muncipal Law (the “Municipal Agreement”), to make funds available to
qualified property owners that will be repaid by such property owners through
charges on the real properties benefited by such funds, thereby fulfilling the
purposes of this law and fulfilling an important public purpose.
B. The County of Putnam is authorized to implement this Energize NY Benefit Financing
Program pursuant to the Municipal Home Rule Law and Article 5-L of the New York
General Municipal Law.
C. This law shall be known and may be cited as the “Energize NY Benefit Financing
Program Law of the County of Putnam”.
For purposes of this law, and unless otherwise expressly stated or unless the context
requires, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
AUTHORITY – The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, as
defined by subdivision two of section eighteen hundred fifty-one of the Public
Authorities Law, or its successor.
EIC – the Energy Improvement Corporation, a local development corporation, duly
organized under section fourteen hundred eleven of the Not-For-Profit Corporation Law,
authorized hereby on behalf of the County to implement the Energize NY Benefit
Financing Program by providing funds to qualified property owners (as defined in this
law) and providing for repayment of such funds from monies collected by the County tax
collecting officer as a charge to be levied on the real property and collected in the same
manner and same form as the County taxes.
ENERGY AUDIT – A formal evaluation or “assessment” of the energy consumption of a
permanent building or structural improvement to real property, conducted by a
contractor certified by the Authority, or certified by a certifying entity approved by the
Authority, for the purpose of identifying appropriate energy efficiency improvements that
could be made to the property.
ENERGY EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT – Any renovation or retrofitting of a building to
reduce energy consumption, such as window and door replacement, lighting, caulking,
weatherstripping, air sealing, insulation, and heating and cooling system upgrades, and
similar improvements, determined to be cost-effective pursuant to criteria established by
the Authority, not including lighting measures or household appliances that are not
permanently fixed to real property.
QUALIFIED PROPERTY OWNER – An owner of residential or commercial real property
located within the boundaries of the County that is determined to be eligible to
participate in the Energize NY Benefit Financing Program under the procedures for
eligibility set forth under this law.
RENEWABLE ENERGY SYSTEM – An energy generating system for the generation of
electric or thermal energy, to be used primarily at such property, except when the
Qualified Property Owner is a commercial entity in which case the system may be used
for other properties in addition to the subject property, by means of solar thermal, solar
photovoltaic, wind, geothermal, anaerobic digester gas-to-electricity systems, fuel cell
technologies, or other renewable energy technology approved by the Authority not
including the combustion or pyrolysis of solid waste.
RENEWABLE ENERGY SYSTEM FEASIBILITY STUDY – A written study, conducted by a
contractor certified by the Authority, or certified by a certifying entity approved by the
Authority, for the purpose of determining the feasibility of installing a renewable energy
§156-3. Establishment of an Energize NY Benefit Financing Program.
A. An Energize NY Benefit Financing Program is hereby established by the County,
whereby EIC acting on its behalf pursuant to the Municipal Agreement, may provide
funds to Qualified Property Owners in accordance with the procedures set forth
under this law, to finance the acquisition, construction and installation of Renewable
Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements and the verification of the
installation of such systems and improvements.
B. For funds provided to a Qualified Property Owner which is a commercial entity, notfor-profit organization, or entity other than an individual, EIC shall have the authority
to impose requirements on the maximum amount of funds to be provided, which may
consider factors including but not limited to the property value, projected savings,
project cost, and existing indebtedness secured by such property.
C. For financings made to a Qualified Property Owner who is an individual, the funds
provided shall not exceed the lesser of: (i) ten percent of the appraised value of the
real property where the Renewable Energy Systems and/or Energy Efficiency
Improvements will be located, or (ii) the actual cost of installing the Renewable
Energy Systems and/or Energy Efficiency Improvements, including the costs of
necessary equipment, materials, and labor and the cost of verification of such
systems and improvements.
§156-4. Procedures for eligibility.
A. Any property owner in the County may submit an application to EIC on such forms as
have been prepared by EIC and made available to property owners on the website of
EIC and at the County offices and/or website.
B. Every application submitted by a property owner shall be reviewed by EIC acting on
behalf of the County, which shall make a positive or negative determination on such
application based upon the criteria for making a financing enumerated in section 156-
5 of this law. EIC may also request further information from the property owner where
necessary to aid in its determination.
C. If a positive determination on an application is made by EIC acting on behalf of the
County, the property owner shall be deemed a Qualified Property Owner and shall be
eligible to participate in the Energize NY Benefit Financing Program in accordance
with the procedure set forth under section 156-6 of this law; provided that in no case
shall a property owner that has received funds from another municipal corporation
for the acquisition, construction and installation of Energy Efficiency Improvements
and/or Renewable Energy Systems be deemed a Qualified Property Owner.
§156-5. Application criteria.
Upon the submission of an application, EIC acting on behalf of the County, shall make a
positive or negative determination on such application based upon the following criteria
for the making of a financing:
A. The proposed Energy Efficiency Improvements and/or Renewable Energy Systems
are determined to be cost effective based on guidelines issued by the Authority;
B. The property owner may not be in bankruptcy and the property may not constitute
property subject to any pending bankruptcy proceeding;
C. The amount financed under the Energize NY Benefit Financing Program shall be
repaid over a term not to exceed the weighted average of the useful life of Renewable
Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements to be installed on the property
as determined by EIC;
D. Sufficient funds are available from EIC to provide financing to the property owner;
E. The property owner is current in payments on any existing mortgage;
F. The property owner is current in payments on any existing real property taxes and
has been current on real property taxes for the previous three years; and
G. Such additional criteria, not inconsistent with the criteria set forth above, as the
County, or EIC acting on its behalf, may set from time to time.
§156-6. Opt-in, Energize NY Finance Agreement.
A. A Qualified Property Owner may participate in the Energize NY Benefit Financing
Program through the execution of an energize NY finance agreement made by and
between the Qualified Property Owner and EIC, acting on the behalf of the County
(the “Energize NY Finance Agreement”).
B. Upon execution of the Energize NY Finance Agreement, the Qualified Property Owner
shall be eligible to receive funds from EIC acting on behalf of County, for the
acquisition, construction, and installation of qualifying Renewable Energy Systems
and Energy Efficiency Improvements; provided the requirements of Section 156-7 of
this law have been met.
C. The Energize NY Finance Agreement shall include the terms and conditions of
repayment set forth under section 156-8 of this law.
§156-7. Energy audit, renewable energy system feasibility study.
A. No funds shall be made available for Energy Efficiency Improvements unless
determined to be appropriate through an Energy Audit as defined in Section 156-2.
B. No funds shall be made available for a Renewable Energy System unless determined
to be feasible through a Renewable Energy System Feasibility Study as defined in
C. The cost of such Energy Audit and/or Renewable Energy System Feasibility Study
shall be borne solely by the property owner but may be included in the financed
amount if the work is approved.
§156-8. Terms and conditions of repayment.
The Energize NY Finance Agreement between the Qualified Property Owner and EIC
acting on behalf of the County, shall set forth the terms and conditions of repayment in
accordance with the following:
A. The principal amount of the funds paid to the Qualified Property Owner hereunder,
together with the interest thereon, shall be paid by the property owner as a charge on
their County tax bill and shall be levied and collected at the same time and in the
same manner as County property taxes, provided that such charge shall be
separately listed on the tax bill. The County shall make payment to EIC or its
designee in the amount of all such separately listed charges within 30 days of the
date the payment is due to be made to the County.
B. The term of such repayment shall be determined at the time the Energize NY Finance
Agreement is executed by the property owner and EIC, provided that in no case shall
the term exceed the weighted average of the useful life of the systems and
improvements as determined by EIC acting on behalf of the County.
C. The rate of interest for the charge shall be fixed by EIC acting on behalf of the County
at the time the Energize NY Finance Agreement is executed by the property owner
D. The charge shall constitute a lien upon the real property benefited by the Energize NY
Benefit Financing Program as set forth in Article 5-L of the General Municipal Law
and shall run with the land. A transferee of title to the benefited real property shall be
required to pay any future installments, including interest thereon.
§156-9. Verification and report.
A. EIC shall be responsible for verifying and reporting to the County on the installation
and performance of Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements
financed by such Program.
B. The County shall verify and report on the installation and performance of Renewable
Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements financed by the Energize NY
Benefit Financing Program in such form and manner as the Authority may establish.
This local law shall take effect upon filing with the NYS Secretary of State.