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County to get funds for energy efficiency

IRONTON — More than $26 million in grants, allocated through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has been awarded for weatherization funding and energy efficiency in U.S. Rep. Charlie Wilson’s Sixth District.

In total, Lawrence County will receive more than $2.3 million in the form of a grant through the federal government’s Home Weatherization Assistance Program. The monies will be allocated through the Ironton Lawrence County Community Action Organization.

“Putting Ohioans back to work weatherizing homes just makes good sense,” Wilson said. “It’s an investment that pays back in three ways: it creates sorely needed jobs, it will help families save money on their energy bills, and it will help move this country toward energy independence.”

Funding will support weatherization of homes, including adding insulation, sealing leaks and modernizing heating and air conditioning equipment.

The program will allow an average investment of up to $6,500 per home in energy efficiency upgrades. Funding is only available for families making up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level — around $44,000 a year for a family of four.

Approximately 291 homes are currently estimated to be eligible for the program throughout the entire Sixth District.

The Home Weatherization Assistance Program allows low-income families to reduce energy bills by making homes more energy efficient, reducing heating bills and overall energy bills by hundreds of dollars per year.