Ielmini: Building support critical to moving Insulator bills forward

The New Year brought renewed efforts to expand support on Capital Hill for two House bills that, if passed, could save taxpayers money while also generating new work opportunities for members of the Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers (HFIAW).  

Pete Ielmini, Executive Director of the Mechanical Insulators Labor Management Cooperative Trust (LMCT), discussed the organization’s Congressional recruitment efforts during his recent appearance on America’s Work Force Union Podcast. 

He explained to AWF Host Ed “Flash” Ference that the Federal Mechanical Insulation Act (FMIA), H.R. 4663, has 35 co-sponsors, including members from both parties, but would benefit from adding more names. A companion bill in the U.S. Senate also needs additional support so it can be formally introduced. 

Changes proposed in the FMIA

H.R. 4663 proposes amendments to the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA). If passed, FMIA would add language to EISA that expands the type of energy audits conducted on all public buildings every four years. The new language would specifically require the evaluation of the mechanical insulation to ensure maximum energy efficiency goals are achieved. 

The audits are required every four years on more than 350,000 federal buildings. Improving energy efficiency will save taxpayers money, reduce the carbon footprint and increase work opportunities for HFIAW members.

Ielmini described the language in the bill as “common sense,” which has helped when explaining the purpose of the bill to members of Congress.

Companion bill ties insulation to tax breaks  

The second bill the Insulators Union hopes can pass in 2024 is the Mechanical Insulation Installation Incentive Act (MIIIA), H.R. 6104. It could work as a companion bill to FMIA.

While the MIIIA has some bipartisan support, it too would benefit from additional co-sponsors. The bill proposes offering tax credits to anyone who includes the proper installation of mechanical insulation into a public or private building project. 

The end result would be more energy-efficient mechanical systems that provide a return on investment of as little as two years and create more work that HFIAW signatory contractors can pursue. 

Listen to the entire segment on America’s Work Force Union Podcast and learn more about the proposed legislation:


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