Mechanical Insulation Incentive Act Introduced into House

Mechaincal Insulators LMCT | News | Mechanical Insulation Incentive Act Introduced into House

The Insulators Labor Management Cooperative Trust (LMCT) is proud to announce that on Oct. 26, Rep. Linda T. Sánchez (D-Calif.) and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) introduced the Mechanical Insulation Installation Incentive Act of 2023.

The bipartisan legislation will create jobs for members of the Insulators Union and promote energy efficiency by significantly reducing U.S. energy consumption by supporting mechanical insulation installation across the country.

A proven technology that cuts energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in buildings, mechanical insulation can be cost-prohibitive for many building owners.

To help bridge the gap and make this technology affordable, H.R. 6104 will provide a tax incentive for the installation of mechanical insulation in buildings to make them more energy efficient by skilled mechanics.

Specifically, the Mechanical Insulation Installation Incentive Act (MIIIA) will provide a tax credit for up to 10 percent of the labor costs incurred by a taxpayer in installing mechanical insulation property on pipes and equipment.

While the credit may not seem significant, LMCT Executive Director Pete Ielmini stressed the need for an incentive to help raise awareness about the value of mechanical insulation.

“It may not seem like much of a credit, but we need to realize that this is an incentive to raise awareness about the value of mechanical insulation,” he said. “Much like a retail sale of 10 percent off, where the goal is to incentivize customers, as they will buy more than the sale item. We all know the energy savings will outweigh the 10 percent incentive.”

It is in addition to the short return on investment for mechanical insulation projects, which is often 24 months or less. Once the savings have paid for the project, then any future savings are profits.

Overall, the MIIIA will help save energy, lower energy costs and reduce energy consumption while supporting good-paying Insulators Union jobs.

Rep. Sanchez, who also co-sponsored the Federal Mechanical Insulation Act (FMIA) earlier this year with Rep. Randy Weber (R-Texas), stressed that mechanical insulation has long been overlooked as a solution to energy efficiency. 

Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.)“It is a vital component in constructing and maintaining high-performance, energy-efficient buildings and protects our environment,” said Sánchez. “This bill will encourage more manufacturing facilities, office buildings, schools, hospitals, power plants, hotels and universities to invest in improving the energy efficiency of their buildings, and it will create good-paying union jobs in the process.”

For Rep. Fitzpatrick, the bill will not only create greater energy efficiency, but it should be an essential component of the overall strategy to reduce emissions while also creating new jobs.

Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick“The bipartisan Mechanical Insulation Installation Incentive Act would encourage more American businesses to install proper insulation, thereby reducing their own energy costs by improving the performance of their buildings,” he said. “I am proud to be leading this effort and grateful to Congresswoman Sánchez for her partnership on this issue.”

Both Fitzpatrick and Sanchez sit on the House Ways and Means Committee, where the bill was assigned. The Committee is the chief tax-writing committee in the House of Representatives.

The first step for the MIIIA will be committee hearings, which will then lead to an eventual committee vote.

The LMCT believes the bipartisan nature of the bill, combined with bipartisan sponsorship, gives the legislation a realistic chance to make it out of committee – especially as it follows the model used earlier this year.

H.R. 6104 is the second LMCT bill introduced into the House of Representatives this year.

While the MIIIA seeks to offer businesses a tax break to install mechanical insulation, the FMIA (H.R. 4663) will require that a Mechanical Insulation Energy Audit is included with the federal energy audit, which is performed every four years on all federal buildings.

“This is the huge benefit of having two bipartisan bills simultaneously in Congress that directly relate to the application of mechanical insulation,” said Ielmini.

The LMCT is confident the bipartisan FMIA will continue to gain traction in the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

Working with the lobbying firm State Federal Strategies (SFS), the LMCT is blazing a pathway into Congress. Together, both SFS and the LMCT are working to educate members of both the House and Senate about the value of mechanical insulation and the mechanical insulation industry as a whole.

“Gaining Republican, as well as Democratic support, is vital to achieving the overall support needed to pass such legislation,” Ielmini said.

They are taking the same approach used with the FMIA and applying it to the MIIIA.

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