planet-smart blog

Leasing program makes solar power affordable for nonprofits

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New Resource Bank

New Resource Bank has partnered with San Bruno–based Belvedere Equipment Finance to create a solar-equipment leasing program for nonprofit customers that takes advantage of a grant program from the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

“As far as we know, it’s a unique program, specific to renewable energy and solar installations, and completely in sync with our goals of supporting sustainable business practices,” says Joe Anzalone, New Resource executive vice president and Chief Banking Officer. “We customized this for nonprofits in a way that allows both the bank and the nonprofit to share the benefit of treasury grants.”

Grant covers nearly one-third of costs

The grant program, administered by the Treasury Dept. as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, allows developers of renewable-energy initiatives that are eligible for the federal production tax credit (PTC) or investment tax credit (ITC) to instead apply for a cash grant covering up to 30 percent of a project’s costs.

New Resource is taking advantage of the program to provide nonprofits a cost-effective way to install solar panels. New Resource has created a true leasing option for the necessary equipment. Belvedere, a 30-year-old equipment leasing company, structures the financing and arranges installation of the solar equipment, and the bank receives the grant, reducing the overall cost to the nonprofit organization. The bank is the lessor, while the participating nonprofit is the lessee.

Program draws new customers to bank

New Resource currently handles about $5 million in leasing agreements with nonprofits, including schools, churches and municipalities. “This is an innovative program that’s brought a new segment of customers to New Resource. We’re hoping to further develop these new customer relationships by delivering additional banking services over time,” Anzalone says.

The grant program was scheduled to expire on December 31, 2010, but has been extended for one year as part of the recently passed federal tax relief legislation.

Contact Joe Anzalone at 415.995.8149.

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