Spending bills support climate action policies

Legislation retroactively extends three energy efficient tax incentives from 2017- 2020 and supports resilient design.

WASHINGTON – Dec. 20, 2019 – The two spending packages approved by Congress yesterday include policies that support the design of resilient buildings as well as extend energy efficient tax incentives through 2020.

If signed into law by President Trump, H.R. 1865 will extend the Energy Efficient Commercial Buildings Deduction (179D), the New Energy Efficient Home Credit (45L), and the Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit (25C) from 2017 through 2020. The AIA has been a longtime advocate for extending the tax incentives and has encouraged Congress to make them permanent as well as increase the 179D deductible amount from $1.80 per square foot to $3.00.

“Energy efficient tax incentives are critical to protecting America’s building stock from the increasing threat posed by climate change,” said AIA EVP/Chief Executive Officer Robert Ivy, FAIA. “Making these investments today not only makes economic sense, but it provides pathways towards saving our planet. We will continue to advocate for these and other critical incentives to ensure we move the needle on climate action.”

The second half of the package supports the development of resilient communities. Specifically, H.R. 1158 requires FEMA to follow the latest building codes and hazard-resistant design standards for the construction of homes and facilities as part of hazard-mitigation projects. Additionally, the law allows for flexibility in the selection of materials used, which allows architects to specify the use of resilient materials. Overall, the law supports the design and construction of structures that will be resilient to future disasters. The American Institute of Architects lobbied Congress to include the “resilient construction” provision in the legislation as part of its commitment to sustainable and resilient design. It also supports the implementation of the bipartisan Disaster Recovery Reform Act of 2018, which the AIA lobbied for last year.

Visit AIA’s website to learn more about its advocacy efforts.

About AIA

Founded in 1857, AIA consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through more than 200 international, state and local chapters, AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing.

AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation, and world. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards.


Matt Tinder

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