02/24/17 : Kateri Callahan

Efficiency Bill: Persistence Can Get Us There

Last week’s news that Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) re-introduced their signature energy efficiency legislation (and then watching The Founder, a biopic on Ray Kroc) got me thinking about the power of persistence. You hear it so often – the true hallmark of leadership is the ability to persevere through setbacks, even repeated setbacks. Sens. Portman and Shaheen are the embodiment of such leadership on energy efficiency. They simply do not give up.

All of us at the Alliance are so proud to have worked shoulder to shoulder with the Senators on the “Portman-Shaheen” bill (S. 385) for the past six years, and like them, we don’t intend to stop now.  Our work to date is not without merit and impact. We have steadily built bipartisan support and we have raised awareness about the benefits of stronger national efficiency policy.

Is this the year we finally get Portman-Shaheen across the finish line? My honest answer is we don’t know. But we will never know if we don’t keep fighting for it. In fact, I’m adopting a tried and true approach from the famous Woody Hayes for our work in this Congress: “Paralyze resistance with persistence.”

I can’t emphasize enough how important it is that everyone who cares about energy efficiency get involved in our fight – particularly those of you in the business community. Lawmakers need to hear from their constituents that this is important to them.

Please take a moment to call or email your federal representatives and ask them to pass S. 385 this year. It’s simple to do – look up your U.S. House member here and your senators here. Then call their office numbers on their website and ask them if they support the Portman-Shaheen energy efficiency legislation (S. 385). A House version of the bill has not yet been introduced, but we expect it will be soon. Last year’s House version was H.R. 2177 sponsored by Reps. David McKinley and Peter Welch.

Remember, we were very close to seeing Portman-Shaheen pass last year, and with fighters like Sens. Portman and Shaheen behind us, along with champions like Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), I wouldn’t bet against it this year.

It’s clearly a busy time in Washington but we don’t intend to let energy efficiency get lost in the shuffle. We look forward to working with you throughout the year to advance our mission.