WASHINGTON, DC - Today, U.S. Reps. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) and Tom Reed (R-NY) announced they introduced the Roofing Efficiency Jobs Act of 2014 in the House of Representatives, a bill to create an estimated 40,000 construction and manufacturing jobs while improving energy efficiency by making a much-needed reform to the outdated cost recovery system.
"This bipartisan bill creates good jobs right here in America while helping local businesses lower their energy costs," said Rep. Pascrell. "By making this correction to our tax code, we can help businesses reduce energy consumption through key investments in our nation's green infrastructure and strengthen our economy through job creation."
“This is a jobs bill that has the added benefit of saving millions in energy costs with energy-efficient roofing systems,” said Rep. Reed. “The bill fairly puts the depreciation period of a commercial roof in line with its actual lifespan, a common sense reform to our tax code that results in a win for manufacturing and construction jobs and a win for small businesses working to improve their energy efficiency and lower their energy costs.”
“We don’t need to choose between good jobs and helping the environment – we can do both with the same policy,” said Senator Cardin, who leads the bill in the Senate. “Cool Roofs provides an opportunity to reduce energy consumption and add nearly 40,000 jobs to a sector of our economy that still has not felt the full effect of our emergent recovery. It’s no wonder this bill, which provides incentives to install energy efficient roofs and simplifies the tax code, has such broad support across industries and labor.”
Current law requires a 39-year depreciation schedule for commercial roofs while the average lifespan of these roofs averages just 17 years. This discrepancy causes building owners to delay the full replacement of older, failing roofs in favor of limited, piecemeal repairs. The Roofing Efficiency Jobs Act of 2014 lowers the depreciation period for commercial roofs to 20 years.
By making energy efficient roofing systems more accessible, energy consumption in the United States could be reduced by as much as 11.4 trillion BTUs and save small businesses and consumers millions of dollars each year in energy costs. This legislation also creates thousands of well-paying jobs. A report conducted by Ducker Worldwide, a global industrial research firm, found that reforming the depreciation schedule for commercial roofs would spur demand and create an estimated 40,000 jobs.
The bill is supported by a wide range of manufacturing, energy efficiency, labor and construction organizations including the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), Center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing (CEIR), Joint Roofing Industry Labor and Management Committee, National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) and the United Union of Roofers, Waterproofers and Allied Workers.