Assemblymember Hunter’s Legislation to Promote Green Technology in PILOT Projects Signed into Law

Assemblymember Pamela J. Hunter (D-Syracuse) announced that legislation she sponsored to raise the standards of payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) projects to encourage the use of green technologies and energy-saving measures has been signed into law (Ch. 386 of 2019).

“The devastating effects of climate change are happening all around us, and it’s vital that we take action now to combat this existential threat,” Hunter said. “By raising the green energy standards of PILOT projects, we can reduce the use of fossil fuels and help make New York State a more sustainable place to live. This law is a step in helping ensure our children and grandchildren inherit a healthy planet.”

The new law reforms the current PILOT program approval process by requiring local industrial development agencies (IDAs) to consider the extent to which a proposed project will implement resource conservation, energy efficiency, green technologies and alternative and renewable energy sources within what is practical and economically feasible. This allows PILOT programs to not only continue boosting local economies, but also helps our state meet its ambitious renewable energy goals and encourages more eco-friendly projects, Hunter noted.

Hunter has been a staunch environmental advocate and is still working to reduce our state’s carbon footprint. Earlier this year, she co-sponsored and helped pass the New York State Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85% by 2050, requires that 70% of electricity be produced by renewable energy systems by 2030 and requires that 100% of the state’s electricity be produced without emissions by 2040 (Ch. 106 of 2019). In addition, Hunter sponsored and passed a bill protecting the state’s fresh water supply (A.2286) and co-sponsored a measure requiring the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to publish a list of “high local environmental impact zones” and consider various factors that contribute to a community’s environmental health (A.1779).