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Posted on Mon, Aug 22, 2011 : 5:53 a.m.

Two Ypsilanti neighborhoods approved for energy improvement breaks

By Tom Perkins

Two Ypsilanti neighborhoods will soon be eligible for several incentives to help improve energy efficiency in residents' homes.

Residents in the Prospect Park and East Prospect Park neighborhoods can partake in the Michigan Better Buildings program, which was established to promote energy efficiency throughout targeted neighborhoods statewide.

Michigan received $30 million for the program, which is federally funded through the U.S. Department of Energy.

Residents in selected neighborhoods can pay $25 and receive a full home energy audit, 10 compact fluorescent light bulbs, faucet aerators, a programmable thermostat and a low-flow shower head.

Participating residents can also qualify for low-interest loans and rebates on energy efficiency equipment like solar panels or water heaters.

The Ypsilanti City Council approved the neighborhoods' participation last week. The neighborhoods were selected because they met several criteria for the program that included proximity to public transit, high home ownership, mixed income housing and a commitment to establishing a green community.

City and Better Building staff will promote the program through several avenues, including going door-to-door in the neighborhoods.

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Tue, Aug 23, 2011 : 1:52 p.m.

I think this is fantastic! I switched over my light bulbs and added low flow aerators to all of my faucets and I've saved quite a bit of money on my electric bill (less hot water used, less electricity). Many homes do not have insulation in their exterior walls (mine doesn't) and it costs only a couple of thousand (2000-3000) to get it put it in. But that's money that a lot of people don't have and yet if they did, it could save them a lot more on heating and cooling costs. Hence the low interest loans. This is a great opportunity for these neighborhoods and if they take good advantage of it, they will completely come out on top and will have great bragging rights to others who will then sign up for the same services. This is a very good thing!!


Mon, Aug 22, 2011 : 10:23 p.m.

Not fair? It's not about people not being 'bright enough' - it is about the people who can't afford new energy efficient water heaters/furnaces, programmable thermostats, etc. Why not give a little help to people to become a little more efficient? Doesn't this benefit everyone if we use less of the natural resources?


Mon, Aug 22, 2011 : 9:27 p.m.

You sound envious. I'll give you some of my lightbulbs and possibly my lowflow showerhead if my hair comes out like Jerry's did in that Seinfeld episode.


Mon, Aug 22, 2011 : 5:52 p.m.

Can we please stop giving my money to other people who aren't bright enough to already have done these things? See, right now they are paying for their own costs of not being more efficient. That is fair. But now, I'm going to have to pay for it. That is not fair. This is just like my paying my mortgage on my underwater home and the banks and government taking that money and paying for others to walk away from their properties. STOP IT!!!!