When the Fresno County Board of Supervisors voted to adopt the HERO program, the goal was to help local homeowners make energy and efficiency upgrades that could reduce utility bills and greenhouse gas emissions while creating local clean-energy jobs. Today, it’s clear that the program is working: through the HERO Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing program, more than 3,100 homeowners in Fresno County have made almost 6,300 energy efficiency, water efficiency or solar power improvements to their homes.
Since the financing option became available in Fresno County, the program has also had a positive impact on the local economy, generating almost $110 million in new economic activity. By stimulating home renovations, the HERO Program also increases demand for local contractor services. As a result, the HERO Program is now supporting an estimated 539 regional jobs through this boost to the local economy. Many of these jobs, like those in the local construction sector, cannot be automated or outsourced.
“We started offering HERO about a year and a half ago and since then our business has nearly doubled, in part, because it has allowed us to make our services available to more customers,” said Paul Schultheis, owner of California Grass and Greens, a local small business that has grown with HERO in Fresno. “Our customers also like the added assurance that comes with using HERO, which has safeguards they won’t find with other payment options.”
The financing option enables homeowners to make energy and efficiency improvements and to pay for them over time at a fixed interest rate through an additional line item on their property taxes. The resources saved through HERO-financed efficiency upgrades are significant. On average, for every 1,000 homes that complete HERO-financed efficiency upgrades: carbon emissions saved are equivalent to taking 8,500 cars off the road for one year; energy saved is equivalent to powering 13,800 homes for one year; and water saved is equivalent to 2.7 million showers.
The HERO program is available to all homeowners in Fresno County.
News item from HERO Program