The National Consumer Law Center?s Report Lauds WAP ARRA

The below excerpt is reprinted with permission from the National Consumer Law Center’s report “ Low Income Weatherization: Stimulus-Funded Program Shines but Storm Clouds are on the Horizon.” Executive Summary On February 17, 2009, President Barack Obama signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), commonly known as the Federal Stimulus or Recovery Act. The President and Congress were responding to a global financial crisis, the likes of which the United States had not experienced since the Great Depression of the 1930s. This report focuses on:
  • The successes that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (and other states) achieved under ARRA’s provision “[t]hat $5,000,000,000 [billion] shall be for the Weatherization Assistance Program,” and
  • The challenges that are ahead—especially the difficulty of maintaining an adequate and sustainable funding level for the program post-ARRA.
The ARRA appropriation raised two major challenges. First, ARRA imposed Davis-Bacon wage requirements on WAP for the first time in the program’s history—the requirement that all weatherization workers be paid a “prevailing wage” reflective of wages paid for comparable work in the local job market. Second, the significant increase in funding required states to find large numbers of additional energy auditors to evaluate each home’s energy needs and skilled contractors to perform the energy efficiency work, while maintaining high quality... Read the rest at The State of Poverty, NASCSP's blog. Don't forget to sign up for e-mail updates as well!