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Putnam FORD Uses New Financial Tool to Go Solar

DARIEN, Conn., August 15, 2017 — Putnam Ford, a 20,000 sq ft automobile dealership and service center located just off interstate 395 will soon put its roof to work to generate approximately 95% of its total electrical needs. Such projects are not a new concept within the auto industry, but the method of finance deployed by owner Jake Dykeman is new and becoming available in a growing number of states.  The 108.8kW solar array has been financed by Greenworks Lending through a public private partnership called C-PACE, which stands for Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy.

The program provides private capital from lenders such as Greenworks for commercial building upgrades, retrofits, and new construction that improves energy performance. With C-PACE, repayment is made through the business’s property tax bill over the life of the upgrades, allowing most projects to be cash flow positive on day one.

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Congresswoman Esty discusses clean energy initiative at Crowley auto dealership in Plainville

PLAINVILLE — U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty on Monday highlighted clean energy investments by Crowley Ford as part of the state’s Green Bank program.

“It’s been very exciting,” said Ken Crowley, of Crowley Auto Group.

In the past six years, the Connecticut Green Bank has financed more than 18,000 projects to help businesses lower energy costs and reduce their carbon footprints.

“There’s a lot of interest,” said Esty, during a visit to Crowley Ford.

Solar panels on the roof of the New Britain Avenue dealership were financed by the Green Bank’s Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) Program. Crowley said the solar panels are already paying for themselves with reduced energy costs.

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CARA Response

I am writing in response to the July 7th Op-Ed titled, Connecticut Should be Tesla Country. Mr. Sibilla is wrong about numerous of his claims throughout the piece.

Tesla has worked relentlessly to undercut investments in Connecticut that over 270 franchised auto retailers have made in our communities, by changing state law to carve out an exemption for Tesla - a single company. The legislators agreed this law was unnecessary. Tesla could sell their vehicles at dealerships across Connecticut today; however they have made the choice not to and only want special treatment.

Mr. Sibilla claims that Connecticut needs to cut out the "middleman" in order to sell Electric Vehicles (EVs) and reach goals for clean air standards. Connecticut dealerships have sold more EVs in 2016 than any year before, 92% of all EVs last year. The Connecticut Automotive Retailers Association (CARA) continues to support Connecticut’s EV rebate program, CHEAPR in partnership with the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

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Actually, Connecticut Should Remain Discount Country

The first problem with Sibilla’s argument is, of course, that the referenced study has been thoroughly debunked. In fact, in February 2015, Washington Post Fact Checker Glenn Kessler described it as “bizarrely outdated” and gave it a maximum of Four Pinocchios for false claims.

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