Local Government

Stimulate local economies while saving energy
Montana communities are invited to join MTPACE, a statewide program that empowers building owners to save energy and money, communities to create new jobs, and local economies to flourish—all without any taxpayer assistance. 

Communities across the United States are taking advantage of the economic development potential offered by Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE). Now, Montana MCA 90-4-1306  authorizes Montana counties and municipalities to make C-PACE financing available in local communities. C-PACE financing stimulates local economies by providing property owners low-cost, long-term loans for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and water conservation improvements. 

  • C-PACE-funded projects stimulate job creation, investment in goods and services, and savings on building operating expenses—improving the market for investment in your community.
  • C-PACE lowers the cost of doing business in your community. Low-interest C-PACE financing reduces building owners’ overall cost of capital to fund necessary building improvements that result in lower operating costs.
  • Buildings can be revitalized through the installation of efficient windows, lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, and more—improving the local building stock and, in turn, helping raise the value of property and the potential tax base.

MTPACE provides a uniform, statewide approach to implementation—managing program guidelines, project qualification, and general program oversight. Offering MTPACE in your community is simple, due to:

  • No cost to local governments--Neither credit exposure, dedication of general funds, or allocation from constricted budgets is required for local governments to implement MTPACE. To help promote no-cost, efficient implementation, MTPACE is administered by the Montana Facility Finance Authority which recovers its costs through transaction fees assessed on completed projects. 
  • Statewide approach--The MFFA establishes uniform standards, documents, and best practices applied consistently across the state. A single C-PACE program promotes scalability by simplifying participation for stakeholders (financial lenders, contractors, project developers, and building owners). 
  • Centralized program administration--The MFFA serves as a single point of access for stakeholders to access C-PACE financing. Serving as an agent of MTPACE, the MFFA maintains and enforces comprehensive program guidelines to ensure each C-PACE project meets the requirements of the C-PACE statute and program goals, and certifies that repayments occur according to contract.    
  • Open market--MTPACE is an "open market," meaning any qualified lender can participate—providing property owners with access to competitive rates and financing terms. Furthermore, any contractor or project developer can work on a qualified project, fostering local business development.  
  • Voluntary participation--Building owner participation in MTPACE is 100% voluntary. No property owner is obligated to take any action; only those who choose to use C-PACE to improve their property pay the tax assessment.
  • Lender consent--MTPACE requires mortgage lenders to consent to C-PACE financings made on properties on which they hold a lien, ensuring C-PACE projects receive buy-in from necessary stakeholders while helping promote the economic viability of C-PACE-funded projects.

 

MTPACE is available to commercial property owners located in all communities within the State of Montana, subject to the applicable local government’s initial, one time election to participate in the program. A local government must authorize its participation in MTPACE through adoption of a final C-PACE Resolution by the appropriate municipal process.

Template Intent Resolution

Template Final Resolution

Local governments are not responsible for and do not authorize participation in C-PACE by each project. The Authority will coordinate and support the efforts to assist each local government that wishes to opt-in to MTPACE. Local governments interested in C-PACE should contact the Authority directly to discuss the MTPACE program.

 For more information, contact the MFFA.

Frequently Asked Questions

C-PACE financings are authorized in the State of Montana pursuant to MCA 90-4-13, (the “PACE Statute”). The PACE Statute enables cities and counties to impose a special charge on real property to secure loans made for energy efficiency, water conservation and renewable energy improvements.

Under MCA 90-4-1306 Once a local government is interested in creating a C-PACE district, the local government has to:

  1. Adopt a Resolution of Intent:
  2. Hold a public hearing at which the public may comment on the proposed program and the program plan; and
  3. Adopt a Resolution Establishing a C-PACE Program and setting the terms and conditions of the program.

Local governments adopt the Authorizing Resolution as noted above to authorize C-PACE projects in their area. The Resolution authorizes the County to impose a C-PACE special assessment, collect payments for the special charge in installments, place those installments on the tax roll, and delegate that authority to the MFFA.

Property owner participation in MTPACE is 100% voluntary. No property owner is obligated to take any action. Only those property owners who choose to use C-PACE to improve their property pay the special charge.

MTPACE requires no credit exposure, nor dedication of general funds, or allocation from constricted budgets for local governments to implement C-PACE. To help promote no-cost, efficient implementation, local governments can choose to charge fees as part of a financing.

C-PACE loans are provided by third-party private lenders such as a bank, savings bank, savings and loan association, and credit union. C-PACE financings do not use funds from local governments to fund projects.

No. C-PACE lenders recognize that neither the MTPACE program or local governments have an obligation to settle or reimburse C-PACE tax assessment to C-PACE lenders.