WASHINGTON - The Window and Door Manufacturers Assn. commended the U.S. House of Representatives for the recent passage of the "Home Star Energy Retrofit Act" (H.R. 5019) by a vote of 246 to 161.

The legislation, sponsored by Reps. Peter Welch (D-VT) and Vern Ehlers (R-MI), will provide temporary consumer incentives to stimulate energy-efficient home improvements, including the purchase of energy-efficient windows, doors and skylights.

"Incentives for improving home energy efficiency are powerful tools to drive consumer purchases that in turn drive the restoration of jobs across the building supply chain, while also resulting in significant energy savings in existing homes," said WDMA Chair Steve Sisson, vice president and general manager of Karona Inc. in Grand Rapids, MI.. "Home Star will help spur the production of more energy-efficient windows, doors and skylights while helping to reduce our nation's overall energy costs."

At the same time, WDMA expressed disappointment at the rejection of a WDMA-supported amendment, offered by Rep. Leonard Boswell (D-IA), which would have delayed application of the EPA Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule (LRRP) to Home Star-funded retrofit projects for one year.

"As we have said numerous times in recent months, the LRRP rule has the potential to hinder the success of the Home Star program due to the lack of certified renovators, trainers, accurate test kits and overall industry awareness. The Boswell Amendment was a common-sense solution that would help assure that the Home Star program has the greatest impact," Sisson said.

The House must still appropriate the $6 billion authorized for the Home Star program. The U.S. Senate has not yet scheduled consideration of the legislation.

Read WDMA's press release.

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