Smyth Says Sales Tax Holiday Bill Is A "Win-Win"
His proposed legislation mixes consumer savings with energy efficiency.
This morning, the Home Depot on Ruether Avenue in Canyon Country served as the backdrop for the unveiling of Assemblyman Cameron Smyth's new legislation AB 150.
Flanked by energy efficient appliances and materials, Smyth detailed the bill, which will provide a one-day sales tax holiday for consumers who purchase Energy Star rated products for their home or business.
Smyth proposes that by offering consumers a break from paying sales tax the Saturday after Earth Day on energy efficient products, California can stimulate the economy, lower its carbon footprint, and save residents money in the long run with lower energy needs.
"The purpose of this bill is to find the balance between energy efficiency and economic development," said Assemblyman Smyth. "The state obviously has some economic challenges, but if we can find ways to [entice] people to come and shop and also benefit the environment and reduce our greenhouse gas issues, for me that's a win-win."
Energy Star rated products use less electricity, water and gas to accomplish their specified task.
For example, a front-loading washing machine spins faster and more efficiently than a standard washer. This allows for clothes to be less damp when they are done washing, therefore cutting the amount of time clothes need to spend in the dryer. This equals significantly less energy usage, which saves the average consumer 30 -50%.
Energy efficient light bulbs also provide more bang for the buck. One standard 65 watt light bulb uses about 15% more energy than four energy efficient bulbs.
By promoting the use of Energy Star rated products, the EPA estimates that a 35 million metric ton reduction of greenhouse gasses has been realized since 2005, along with $12 billion in savings to residents.
A home with a reasonable number of Energy Star appliances saves on average of $450 per year.
Also on hand for the legislation unveiling were the major utilities, which have long supported Energy Star products.
The Southern California Gas Company and Southern California Edison have energy efficient programs where both residential and business clients can earn rebates by lowering their energy usage through a variety of solutions.
Low income customers can also receive discounts on service; learn more about that by clicking here.
Southern California Edison will send a representative to your home or business free of charge to analyze your energy efficiency. The survey will include recommendations on appliance and material upgrades and detail any rebates you could be entitled to. Learn more about rebate programs through Edison by clicking here.
AB 150 will have its first hearing in Assembly Committee on April 20th.