N.J. steps up weatherization efforts

New Jersey is stepping up efforts to help low income-residents weatherize their homes.A July audit showed the state spent only five percent of $119 million in federal stimulus money it was allocated to make homes more energy efficient.Community Affairs Commissioner Lori Grifa said Monday changes in the administration of the program will speed up the process. Grifa said the state should have 30 percent of more than 13,000 units weatherized by the end of the year, which will enable it to get the second half of that federal funding.”Absent some unforeseen development, we should make that deadline in as much as our productivity has increased by seven fold on a monthly basis,” said Grifa.Sen. Barbara Buono is critical of the state’s decision to stop a training program to put people to work in the weatherization program. Labor Department officials say only a few of those who were trained have been hired. The training could resume if the demand for workers increases.

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