Green Businesses urge policymakers to avoid raiding an energy efficiency fund


HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Leaders of green businesses joined environmentalists at the State Capitol. They are concerned because the finance committee released a budget proposal that would cut more than $20 million from the state’s Greenhouse Gas Initiative program or RGGI fund.

Advocates say the proposed fund cuts would cost jobs, harm public health, and energy savings would go out the window.

“The programs that are funded through these initiatives help people weatherize their homes and cut their heating bills or their electric bills putting money back in families pockets,” said Environment Connecticut State Director, Chris Phelps.

“Everyday we send out seven crews all across Connecticut to weathering people’s homes on the spot,” said Leticia Colon de Majias, owner of Energy Efficiencies Solutions.

Energy Efficiencies Solutions is Connecticut-based small business that prides itself on employing minorities and locals. Its workers weatherize homes throughout the state, helping homeowners use less energy. If the RGGI program isn’t funded, the company would be forced to shut down.

“If they cut this our company could go out of business within a few months because it would slow the amount of money invested in efficiencies and renewable in Connecticut,” said de Majias.

Elizabeth Galante brought her business to Connecticut two years ago. She says funding cuts would have a horrible impact on business.

“We are hiring right now. We are hiring more Connecticut residents and these are good jobs, they are safe jobs, good middle class jobs and unfortunately decisions like this or even the discussion of raiding these funds really throws the business community in turmoil and it makes investors very nervous,” said Galante.

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