Here are two headlines you may not read:
“Stimulus funds for weatherization on way to Yuma families” – Yuma Daily Sun
Western Arizona Council of Governments is being allocated $5.9 million over the next three years through the stimulus program to ramp up the weatherization assistance the agency has been providing for the last 30 years in Yuma, La Paz and Mohave counties, said Gina Whittington, human resources director for WACOG.
Currently, the agency weatherizes about 85 homes a year in the three counties. With the additional funding, the agency expects to be able to provide the service to 600 homes by the third year, she said.
She didn’t have a breakdown on how much of the funding would benefit Yuma-area families. However, she said that typically 50 percent of the clients served by the WACOG weatherization program are in Yuma County, with 10 percent in La Paz County and 40 percent in Mohave County.
“The weatherization money really targets the low income who often live in the oldest and least energy efficient homes,” she said. “These are the very people who are least able to pay high energy costs.”
The program’s goal is to provide the clients with the most cost-effective measures, she said. That may mean a new air conditioner, sealing duct work, installing window screens, adding insulation or white-coating mobile home roofs.
“Some of these simple measures provide the biggest return for the clients,” she said.
“This will help the environment because of the greater energy efficiency,” she said. “Long term, with the cost savings, it could help people build wealth over time by being able to pay their utility bills.”
“Southeastern Arizona Community Action Program gets funds to weatherize” – Nogales International
Arizona will receive more than $63 million in ARRA over the next three years, reported the Southeastern Arizona Community Action Program Inc. (SEACAP). About $4.6 million will benefit low-income residents in Graham, Greenlee, Santa Cruz and Cochise counties through the SEACAP program.
Weatherization means adding insulation, sealing leaks and modernizing heating and air conditioning equipment. It can reduce home heating bills by an average of 32 percent, according to SEACAP.
Money well spent? The voters will have to determine that. Something tell me that after all the money is redistributed, all the work has been done, that some lives may be improved in the short-term but things will return to “normal” and the cycle will begin all over again.