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The Popular Green for Green Rebate Program Returns February 15th


The Sustainable Energy Utility, Inc. (SEU) and the Home Builders Association of Delaware are again teaming-up to bring back the popular Green For Green Program.  The program will offer rebates to new home buyers who purchase and non-profits who build high energy efficiency homes that are certified by the National Green Building Standard (NGBS), or Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED), or that have a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) of 59 or less.

Rebates will range between $1000 and $4500 for newly constructed homes depending on the level of sustainability certifications and energy savings.  Sustainability upgrades for energy efficiency, water conservation, indoor air quality, building material and other conservation-oriented features are all considered in the certifications. To qualify for a rebate, a new home must be certified by a third party inspector and meet the standards of NGBS, LEED or HERS and follow the guidelines of the Delaware Green For Green Program.

In 2010 and 2011, when this was offered as a pilot program through the SEU, nearly 200 new home buyers received rebates.  The construction activity accounts for nearly 5% of all homes built in Delaware during that time. When compared to homes built to standard codes, it is estimated that these homes will see a total of $2,371,000 in energy savings over their lifetime.   The average rebate was $4000.

Senator Harris McDowell, Chairman of the SEU said “Energy efficiency is the best way to a clean energy future; the Green For Green Pilot Program proved that more efficient homes make economic and environmental sense; so we are very happy to team with the Home Builders Association of Delaware to offer this program again.” Funded with money from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) the rebates will fund sustainability features for approximately 170 homes in 2013 alone.

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is a cooperative effort among the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Together these states have capped and will reduce power sector CO2 emissions 10 percent by 2018.  A report issued in November 2012, estimates that RGGI investments, like Delaware Green For Green Program, will offset the need for more than 27 million megawatt hours of electricity generation and 26.7 million British Thermal Units (BTUs) of energy generation. This savings will help avoid the emission of 12 million short tons of carbon dioxide pollution, an amount equivalent to taking 2 million passenger vehicles off the road for one year.

“Delaware is emerging as a national leader in green home building,” said Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Collin O’Mara. “The ‘Green For Green’ program promotes green homes that provide significant environmental and financial benefits for homeowners and all Delawareans by using less energy, water and resources and providing a healthier and safer environment.”

In 2012 a complete evaluation was done, and it was determined that the program should be offered again with a few improvements. The new program will reward both sustainability achievements and energy efficiency with the greatest rebates going to homes that meet the highest levels of overall efficiency.  New this year will be recognizing homes with HERS rating index 59 or less. The lower the score the better, an index score of 100 is considered to be a standard home.  The Home Energy Rating System (HERS) Index is the common standard by which a home’s energy efficiency is measured. By adopting the HERS rating in addition to the NGBS and LEED; the SEU hopes to attract more home builders to the program. Furthermore, the SEU will reimburse home builders for certification expenses up to $500.  In order to increase the number of rebates available to Delawareans, rebates have been re-aligned with higher standards.  It is estimated that the average rebate will be $1800 while average energy efficiency will increase 15%.  Additionally, this year there will be 10% set aside in the rebate budget for non-profit home builders like Habitat for Humanity who will receive the rebates directly from the program.  The program will still require that homes in subdivisions must be located in designated growth areas according to the Delaware Strategies for State Policies and Spending.  While some exceptions will be considered, in general non-growth area are not served by infrastructure and services, tend to consume more land and require inefficient expenditures of taxpayers’ dollars, and have greater impacts on natural resources, traffic and roads, agriculture and air quality.

The Green For Green program will be administered through the Homebuilders Association of Delaware.  Home buyers can access the program through Delaware home builders who have registered and qualify for the program.  Both home buyers and home builders can learn more about the program through the website: www.degreen4green.com.  The Home Builders Association of Delaware is very excited to see the program come back. “HBADE is proud to once again partner with the SEU and the State of Delaware to bring the Green for Green program to help Delaware new home buyers receive rebates for energy efficient and green minded new homes”, said Fred Fortunato, President of HBADE.

Two orientation workshops are scheduled to be held on the following dates.  The purpose of these workshops will be to inform home builders, verifiers, and raters of the program.

  • February 13, 2013 (Wednesday) 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. – DNREC Auditorium, 89 Kings Hwy., Dover, DE 19901
  • February 28, 2013 (Thursday) 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. – DNREC Auditorium, 89 Kings Hwy., Dover, DE 19901

Survey on Regulatory Barriers to Development in Delaware



Dear Member of HBADE –

The Institute for Public Administration (IPA) at the University of Delaware is researching state and local government regulatory barriers to creating complete communities in Delaware, as part of its Planning for Complete Communities in Delaware project. A Complete Communities Delaware 2012 Summit was held last November and a panel, representing the development community, discussed challenges and opportunities. As a follow-up to this Summit topic, IPA is conducting a short survey of members of the Delaware development community. The purpose of this survey is to assist IPA in learning more about what you perceive to be top state and local government regulatory obstacles to development projects in Delaware.

Your participation in this survey is voluntary and your anonymity is assured. The survey will be available online until Friday, February 15.  If you wish to participate, please link to the IPA survey <HERE>.

Thank you, in advance, for your assistance and input.



Wilmington, DE – Geo-Technology Associates, Inc. (GTA), a mid-Atlantic geotechnical engineering and environmental consulting firm, recently announced that Steven Langseder has joined the firm’s New Castle, Delaware office to manage the environmental group. GTA has been providing environmental consulting services throughout Delaware and southeastern Pennsylvania for more than 15 years.

Langseder, Steve Web

With 25 years of professional experience in environmental consulting, Mr. Langseder’s experience includes managing and performing environmental investigations and remediation at sites throughout the mid-Atlantic United States. He possesses significant regulatory, permitting, and construction management experience. His experience includes the performance of site investigations Phase I Environmental Site Assessments through Remedial Investigations; development of remediation plans; negotiation of remedial strategies with regulatory agencies; and management of remedial action construction activities. Mr. Langseder has managed a variety of projects including: Brownfield redevelopment; voluntary cleanup program (VCP) investigation and remediation; and enforcement sites in accordance with the requirements of state and federal regulations including Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), RCRA Corrective Action, Delaware Hazardous Substance Cleanup Act (HSCA), and Pennsylvania Land Recycling Program (Act 2). Mr. Langseder is also responsible for development of new clients and project opportunities, as well as recruitment, development, and certification of field staff.

Mr. Langseder received his Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from University of Delaware, and is an active member of American Society of Civil Engineers and Society of American Military Engineers. Mr. Langseder’s background also includes nearly 8 years working at DNREC during development of the HSCA regulations, which provided him with unique insight into the intent of the regulations.

Founded in 1985, GTA offers cost-efficient and creative solutions in the planning, design, and construction of commercial, industrial, residential, mining and reclamation, and infrastructure projects. GTA has a staff of over 200, with experience in nearly all areas of geotechnical and environmental consulting, drilling, construction observation and testing, and engineering. Strategically placed offices in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, Ohio, and North Carolina allow for effective coverage throughout the mid-Atlantic region and Carolinas.


NAHB Elects New Leadership for 2013

January 24, 2013 – Members of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) elected four Senior Officers to top leadership positions within the federation during the association’s International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas – including our member Kevin Kelly of Leon Weiner & Associates.


With more than 800 affiliated state and local home builders associations and more than 140,000 members across the country, NAHB is the “voice of the housing industry,” representing the interests of the nation’s housing professionals through advocacy, education and research.

Taking the helm as NAHB’s Chairman of the Board this year is Rick Judson, a Charlotte, N.C.-based home builder with more than 35 years of experience in the building industry. Judson is the owner of Evergreen Development Group in Charlotte, and is a successful builder and developer with several decades of experience in land development and construction of single-family, multifamily and commercial projects.

“To keep the fledgling housing and economic recovery moving forward, NAHB this year will work with the Obama Administration and congressional lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle to promote policies that encourage homeownership, rental housing opportunities and job growth,” said Judson.

Also moving up on the association’s leadership ladder during NAHB’s Las Vegas board meeting was Kevin Kelly, a Delaware builder and developer with more than 30 years of experience in the building industry. He was elected as the 2013 First Vice Chairman of the Board. Kelly has been a builder and developer since he joined Leon N. Weiner & Associates in 1979 and became actively involved at the Home Builders Association of Delaware. His building experience includes land development, multifamily and single-family home building, construction financing and property management.

Tom Woods, a Blue Springs, Mo.-based home builder with more than 40 years of experience in the home building industry, was elected as the 2013 Second Vice Chairman of the Board. Woods is president of Woods Custom Homes. He has developed scores of communities and built more than 1,000 homes in the greater Kansas City area.

Ed Brady, a Bloomington, Ill.-based home builder, joined the NAHB leadership ladder with his election to the post of Third Vice Chairman of the Board. Brady is president of Brady Homes, a company founded in 1964 by his father, William Brady Sr. One of the largest home building firms in central Illinois, Brady Homes has developed 20 residential communities throughout the state, building more than 1,800 single-family homes, 2,000 apartment units and more than 100,000 square feet of light commercial property.

2012 NAHB Chairman Barry Rutenberg, from Gainesville, Fla., remains on the leadership ladder as Immediate Past Chairman. Rutenberg is president of Barry Rutenberg and Associates, Inc. His firm has developed more than a dozen communities and 1,000 homes in the Gainesville area.

Rounding out the association’s leadership is NAHB Chief Executive Officer Jerry Howard, from Washington, D.C. Howard heads up a professional staff of more than 230 working out of the National Housing Center in Washington. He has served as the association’s CEO/EVP since February of 2001. Previously, Howard was NAHB’s chief tax counsel.

Bare root trees now available from the Delaware Center for Horticulture


(photo by Jeff Long)
Affordable, lightweight and easy to plant
Deadline for orders is February 15
Give someone special a TREE this year for Valentine’s Day!
WILMINGTON, Del. – The Delaware Center for Horticulture (TheDCH) kicks off its spring bare root tree sale, with orders due February 15, just in time for Valentine’s Day. For this sale, every order also receives four free tickets to the HBADE Delaware Home Show. Tickets can be redeemed at the Wilmington show on March 2 & 3 or at the Dover show on April 6 & 7.

Ten varieties of trees that thrive in our region’s towns and cities are available. The DCH is the only retail source in the State that sells bare root trees. This sale is NOT A FUNDRAISER for the organization – TheDCH is dedicated to making trees affordable and accessible to as many people as possible.
To learn more about what’s special about bare root trees, and to see a list of available trees and descriptions with photos, visit http://www.thedch.org/what-we-do/community-trees/bare-root-trees.

Bare root trees are inexpensive compared to other trees of similar size with a dirt ball of roots
What makes bare root trees so special?

Bare root trees are lightweight and easy to handle, making planting a
simple activity everyone can enjoy.

Bare root trees are easy to plant because the planting hole should be wide, but does not need to be deep.

Bare root trees are low maintenance with an excellent survival rate as long as they are watered twice a week during the growing season until fully established.

Bare root trees have 200% more roots, which means quicker and healthier growth!

Pre-paid trees can be picked up at TheDCH on during business hours on Wednesday, March 20 and Thursday, March 21. A free “How to Plant your Bare Root Tree” training class (with free pizza!) will be offered at TheDCH in the Trolley Square neighborhood of Wilmington on March 21 from 5:00 – 6:30 PM.

Register here: http://www.thedch.org/activities-events/calendar-events/event/bare-root-tree-workshop-0

Plan ahead to settle in your new tree as soon as possible to prevent the roots from drying up, and to allow time for it to settle in before the summer heat rolls around. Store trees in a cool shady spot until you are ready to plant. Click here to order bare root trees online from the DCH http://www.thedch.org/support-us/thedch-store?product_category=267

BRT DSC08029

Every Tree Counts

All trees planted in Delaware count towards a regional partnership to Plant One Million trees throughout 13 counties in Delaware, southeastern Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. The campaign aims to restore the average “tree canopy cover” (i.e. the area of land shaded by trees) in this region to 30 percent coverage. TheDCH, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and the New Jersey Tree Foundation serve as lead partners in each of the three states. Learn more at http://plantonemillion.org/ To learn more about the benefits of trees, visit: http://www.thedch.org/what-we-do/community-trees/benefits-trees.

For more information about the bare root tree sale or to register for the free planting workshop, contact Annie Acton at (302) 658-6262, ext. 106, or at aacton@TheDCH.org.
High resolution images and captions are available upon request.

The Delaware Center for Horticulture cultivates greener communities statewide through horticulture, education and conservation. Founded in 1977, the Center’s headquarters in Wilmington’s Trolley Square is an oasis in the city. The venue includes a public demonstration garden that backs up to Brandywine Park, an art gallery and a greenhouse. Members of TheDCH and almost 700 active volunteers come from Delaware and the surrounding region. For more information, visit thedch.org or find us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/TheDCH.org

Greetings from International Builders Show in Las Vegas

I have the privilege to join 100+ Delaware HBADE builders and associate members for the annual IBS held this year in Las Vegas.  While it’s cold back in Delaware, the temps here are reaching into the mid 60’s although we spend most of our time inside at educational sessions, meetings, or touring the 400,00 square feet of exhibitor space!


This is the annual show sponsored by our National Association of Home Builders and draws record attendees.  Last year the attendance was over 50,000.  Although the official count is not yet in, it FEELS like they were more attendees


Green Day at International Builder Show

Yesterday was celebrated as Green Day at the International Builder Show in Las Vegas.


Not only was the day full of educational sessions and green home tours, but NAHB and ICC announced the ANSI approval of the National Green Building Standard 2012 update.  Changes to 2012 NGBS include that the new program is benchmarked to the IECC 2009 whereas the original version tied to the IECC2006. But other larger improvements to the standard included a revamping to the remodeling certification projects making it easier to use to be certified; also land developments can now be green certified.  Home Builders, land developers and remodelers should contact an Accredited Verifier for more information.

HBADE Associates Council Community Service Ramp Program Kicks Off

Our Associates Council recently kicked off a community service program to help local high school students and people with needs for ramps to access their homes. Member Debra Young of EmpowerAbility LLC last week held a seminar for the Technical Drafting and Carpentry Shop class at Paul M. Hodgson Vocation Technical High School.  Debra presented on proper ramp design while also providing an Occupational Therapist’s perspective on how the design can impact the end-user.  The next phase of the project is where the students will design and build ramps, with the Associates Council members and other professionals providing guidance and oversight. 
The goal of the program is to challenge students to design the ramps appropriate for each use.  After the ramps are designed, the building plans will be reviewed and approved for building permits by the appropriate jurisdiction.  Then the students will be supervised while they construct and install the ramps.  The ramps will be provided at no cost to the beneficiary family in need.  Debra and other members of the Associates Council are donating their time and supplying the construction materials needed to construct the ramps. 

Delaware School Construction Working Group Comments

Members of the HBADE have participated these last 6 months as members of a working group, authorized by HR 37, to investigate how new public schools are funded from impact fees placed on new construction.

In addition to participating, we provided a number of comments recently, reflecting that school impact fees are not calculated in a uniform manner across the State. We believe in a strong and vibrant public school system to better educate the leaders of tomorrow.  And we appreciate that we will continue to be part of future school planing committees. But we shared a few concerns, for instance the fees that new home purchasers pay have incrementally become too high and thus another economic barrier to entry or move-up in the ranks of homeownership.

We also noted that new homes are not sole producer of new children in school districts and that the cost should be spread wider amongst all contributors.  Further we suggested there should be a uniform statewide consistent method to calculate the school impact fees.

If you are interested in a copy of our submittal, please email hfortunato@hbade.org and we will send to you.  The Committee is not yet complete and its final report is a few weeks away from submission to the Governor and the General Assembly.

Sussex County Three Year Extension on Approvals

Sussex County Council started the new year positively, approving an additional three year extension on subdivision plan approvals. Typically these are subdivision plans that were previously approved but for which construction was delayed due to the economy.


A complete write-up article is available at this link from the Coastal Point:

approves additional three-year extension on approvals


back to HBADE Website


  • NLRB Overturns Browning-Ferris Decision; Reinstates Prior Joint Employer Standard December 15, 2017
    In a victory for NAHB and the small business community, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) voted on Dec. 14 to overturn its 2015 ruling in the case of Browning-Ferris Industries. Yesterday's 3-2 vote effectively overturns an Obama-era decision that radically expanded the traditional definition for joint employer status.
    NAHB Now
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