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house Bill H.R. 2997

Should HUD Partner With the Private Sector to Boost Its Buildings' Efficiency?

Argument in favor

This proposal is a cost effective way for low-income housing facilities to get energy efficiency upgrades, and private entities would be eager to assist in the project.

Steve's Opinion
Our government is the pinnacle of inefficiency. This will help
Like (2)
Mart's Opinion
But, there should be no HUD at all, let alone interventions in the market
Like (1)
Ed's Opinion
Too many cost over runs and crappy products with government run programs.
Like (1)

Argument opposed

The federal government should be investing money in these energy efficiency projects rather than outsourcing the work to private entities.

John's Opinion
Sounds to me like a way for private entities to line their pockets with public money.
Like (2)
Curmudgeon's Opinion
We spent or more accurately squandered that money in 2009 when trusting the incoming president with the unspent half of the TARP debauch. No more should be shoved down the rathole of government's malfeasant pandering.
Like (2)
Ingrid's Opinion
Free market with little government intervention is better!
Like (2)

What is House Bill H.R. 2997?

This bill would direct the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to enter into budget-neutral, performance-based agreements with private entities in order to reduce energy or water costs at multifamily residential units.

The program would continue in its demonstration phase from fiscal year 2016 through the end of 2019, and would carry out improvements at no more than 20,000 residential units. Types of residences that would be targeted for improvements include section 8 housing, elderly housing, and housing for people with disabilities.

Payments to private entities under this program would be contingent on utility savings achieved and documented by third parties, and wouldn’t exceed the total savings achieved by the payment date.

The performance-based agreements could not exceed 12 years, must have an audit protocol, and would only apply to properties that are subject to affordability restrictions for at least 15 years after the completion of conservation improvements.


Residents whose HUD buildings could benefit from energy efficiency projects, owners of HUD buildings, businesses that would assist with projects, and HUD.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 2997

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: This bill’s sponsor, Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL), had this to say about the problem his legislation solves:

“The issue here is the unnecessarily high energy and water costs that are on HUD’s shoulders every year. These costs can be attributed to the inefficient energy systems in certain HUD-assisted properties, such as senior housing and housing for persons with disabilities. Owners of these properties often lack the incentives and capital to perform energy upgrades.”

The Enterprise Housing Community expressed support for this legislation, as it “seeks to improve the energy efficiency of multifamily housing, reduce the cost of managing HUD-assisting housing and improve outcomes for residents.”


Summary by Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: Flickr user MTAPhotos)


Private Investment in Housing Act of 2015

Official Title

To authorize the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development to carry out a demonstration program to enter into budget-neutral, performance-based contracts for energy and water conservation improvements for multifamily residential units.

bill Progress

  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs
  • The house Passed July 14th, 2015
    Roll Call Vote 395 Yea / 28 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on Financial Services
    IntroducedJuly 9th, 2015

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