Improve our industry’s playing field
NCBPA leads efforts to advocate and lobby for an improved playing field in North Carolina’s crowded landscape of policy, legislative and regulatory changes. Join NCBPA to support out efforts to create a better business environment for your company, its staff and your employees well into the future.
2019 Legislative Agenda
NCBPA’s 2019 Legislative Agenda prioritizes policy opportunities that will bring growth and success to our industry, member companies and end users of the products and services they offer. Click here to download a PDF.
2020 Policy Priorities
- Improving minimum energy code requirements and available options in NC’s current and future codes for residential and commercial buildings.
- Modifying the state’s current commercial and industrial buildings energy efficiency opt-out allowance to allow for increased tracking of energy efficiency benefits and increased utility energy efficiency programs for non-residential buildings.
- Increasing the state’s minimum energy efficiency requirements for regulated utilities by establishing new annual milestones and modernizing energy efficiency utility program cost effectiveness testing protocols and standards.
- Increasing the minimum energy efficiency standards of the NC Housing Finance Agency’s Low Income Housing Tax Credit program from ENERGY STAR 2.0 (which no longer exists) to 3.0 or higher, with available utility and state incentives for developers that go above these minimum standards by obtaining home energy ratings, certifications such as Passive House and more.
- Removing major energy code exemptions enacted in recent years for new and existing commercial buildings and for residential attached garages.
- Enabling legislation that removes market and regulatory barriers for Appraisers, Real Estate Professionals and Lenders to participate in properly valuing the higher financial value of energy efficient, green and high performance homes and buildings.
Additional Policy Activities
In addition to these priorities, NCBPA is also working on these policy activities:
- Enabling a health, safety and well-being review for code changes that originate from the legislature.
- Modifying the state’s commercial and industrial energy efficiency opt-out allowance.
- Setting new energy efficiency goals for all of North Carolina’s utilities, including Duke Energy.
- Modernizing how regulated utilities account for energy efficiency in their cost effectiveness testing protocols.
- NCBPA supports federal legislation known as H.R. 1315 “Blue Collar to Green Collar Jobs Development Act of 2019” that would provide funding, training and education opportunities that support our workforce.
Establishing an “Energy Efficiency First” Strategy
On March 23rd of 2018, NCBPA submitted letters to the state’s Energy Policy Council and the Governor’s office with a variety of recommendations for increasing North Carolina’s strategic use of energy efficiency. The “Energy Efficiency First Strategy” recommends for the state to formally adopt energy efficiency as North Carolina’s priority method for addressing current and future energy needs. Read more about it here.
Commercial PACE Financing
NCBPA is leading efforts to bring Property Assessed Capital Expenditures (PACE) Financing to North Carolina in 2019 through new legislation the association introduced in 2017. Read more about this work here including how your company can participate and support the association’s work.
Your Voice Matters
There are many timely local, state and national policy issues that directly impact our member companies and professionals. These include federal tax overhauls, state mandated building and energy codes, and local workforce and economic development issues. These issues aren’t just impacting builders and contractors, they affect our industry professionals working in the field and those that work with us. Product manufacturers, service providers, program administrators, local utilities and other companies are also affected by industry policies and regulations.
NCBPA is the most active organization in the state to voice concerns and take proactive action in support of energy efficient, green and high performance construction – focusing on impacts to the companies and professionals in our industry. Our association takes a proactive stance on many of these issues, proposing legislative and regulatory changes that improve our business climate and level the playing field for our industry. However, the association is only as strong as its members: the more members who participate, the more likely it is that our voices will be heard.
The most important ingredient of a successful association is an active membership that is willing to have its voice heard by the public and by our elected officials. The accomplishments that can be realized through strong, grassroots efforts of our members are limitless. NCBPA is the industry organizer of these efforts, but we need your voice to make a real impact.
NC’s Energy Efficiency Policy Roadmap
On October 17, 2017, NCBPA released a first-ever energy efficiency policy report entitled “The Business Case for Energy Efficiency: How Investing in Less Creates More for North Carolina” offering local and state government officials, utilities, regulators and industry stakeholders clear recommendations for improving the state’s support for energy efficient construction. Implementing the report’s recommendations will yield statewide economic development, job creation and building infrastructure resiliency through new and increased investment in energy efficiency. Click here to download a PDF copy of the report.
The seven recommendations are:
Utility and Regulatory Environment: Expand and modernize utility energy efficiency programs and the regulatory environment that regulates them to achieve at least 1% net utility energy efficiency savings by 2023.
Building and Energy Codes: Adopt and provide education on improved building and energy codes, add an energy seat to the NC Building Code Council and promote above-code utility energy efficiency incentive programs.
Reduce Market and Regulatory Barriers to Entry: Support increased consumer education, decreased regulatory hurdles and offer public/private consumer financing programs to enable increased participation in energy efficient construction.
Energy, Water and Performance Benchmarking: Create and implement a statewide plan that establishes voluntary and mandatory energy, water and performance benchmarking in homes and buildings.
Multifamily and Low-Income Financial Barriers: Reduce the financial barriers that prevent builders, owners, occupants and federally-funded programs from participating in energy efficient construction in multifamily and low-income homes and buildings.
Strategic State Support and Resources: Reinforce and increase the current low-level of state support for public entities involved with energy efficiency and establish an energy roadmap that prioritizes using less before creating new
Workforce Development: Expand state and local support for workforce development programs that train students and displaced workers to fill the vital need for more skilled workers in the state’s energy efficiency trades
Get Involved in Our Industry’s Policy Growth
NCBPA provides member companies with a wealth of opportunities to participate in opportunities that improve our industry’s policy and legislation environment. They include:
Vote for Elected Officials that Support our Industry
Given the importance of local and state politics to our members and the fact that every vote truly does make a difference, elections represent an infrequent but important opportunity for our industry to elect friendly candidates to public office at the local, state and national levels.
NCBPA maintains a member-led Policy & Legislation Committee tasked with identifying candidates and incumbents that support our industry. An analysis of candidate support related solely to our industry will be provided to members beginning in 2018. Contact us to get involved in these efforts.
In addition to voting in local elections, member professionals can make a big difference in the outcome of important races by directly participating in individual campaigns. This could include making a financial contribution, putting up yard signs, asking your peers to vote for pro-industry candidates, or hosting fundraisers for industry-friendly candidates running in your district.
Participate in Face-to-Face Meetings with Elected Officials
Throughout the year, NCBPA Staff led by principal lobbyist Ryan Miller and members of the Policy & Legislation Committee hold regular meetings with local, state and federal elected officials to discuss issues important to the our association and industry. Having member professionals attend these meetings is an extremely effective way to get our message across. That is because you are their constituents, and you have the unique ability to tell these officials exactly how a given policy affects you and others in the industry.
Click on the article below for a recap of our September lobby day in Washington, DC.
Testify Before a Council or Board
Hearings are an opportunity to assert our positions for the public record when policy changes are being considered. In particular, NCBPA staff and members have become increasingly involved in building and energy code development over the past two years, and have also begun presenting to state commissions, committees and councils representing energy efficiency policy, utility regulation and more. The willingness of members to attend these public hearings from time to time and provide testimony on key industry issues is important to influencing the outcomes of policy debates.
Write a Letter to the Editor of Your Local Newspaper
Support local, state and national industry advocacy efforts by working with NCBPA to contribute Op-Eds in local media outlets across the state. Leverage your experience, voice and local connections to gain attention and support for policy, legislative and regulatory issues impacting our industry. A letter to the editor is an important tool we can use to help educate the public on our issues. Additionally, insofar as elected officials read letters to the editor, they can help influence policy decisions on issues important to the home building industry.
NCBPA’s Policy & Legislative Successes
Following the October 2017 release of our energy efficiency policy report entitled “The Business Case for Energy Efficiency: How Investing in Less Creates More for North Carolina”, our staff has been on the road sharing our recommendations with municipalities, utilities, trade groups and legislators across the state.
We presented our report to the Governor’s office on December 4, 2017 and were later invited to present to the Energy Policy Council’s (EPC) Energy Efficiency Committee this past Monday. The EPC is comprised of energy industry leaders appointed by the Governor to advise on domestic energy legislation and rulemakings. The Energy Efficiency Committee focuses on energy efficiency topics in the built environment, for the grid and transportation.