Lacey looks at the transition to 100% electric energy

By JC Medina

During its business session last night, Lacey Town Council discussed a proposal to join Olympia in an Inter-Local Agreement (ILA) to fund a study which would identify and assess the financial implications of the requirement for new buildings to consume only electrical energy.

Community and Economic Development Manager Rick Walk said while the switch to electrification is having a positive impact on reducing the region’s carbon footprint, questions have been raised about the financial implications of the policy. offered depending on local conditions.

“Because there have been no direct studies here locally, it is suggested that we expand this study to analyze these impacts and that various councils and commissions take action with more information at some point in the future,” Walk said.

The proposed electrification policy would change local municipal codes to require electrical appliances and systems in new residential and commercial buildings and prohibit them from connecting to natural gas.

Research for this proposed policy would cost a total of $30,476. Lacey’s proportionate share of the total cost is $7,619 — the same with Olympia, Tumwater and Thurston County.

Walk said if approved, the 2022 Climate Action Implementation Budget would fund Lacey’s proportional share.

Lacey City Mayor Andy Ryder said council would decide whether to join the ILA for the study at its next city council meeting.

Phase 4 of Thurston’s Climate Action Plan

City Council also considered the proposed ILA for Phase 4 of Thurston’s climate action plan. This would create an ongoing framework to support the implementation of regional climate action.

If approved, the total budget to implement ILA Phase 4 in 2022 is $242,648, with Lacey’s share being $60,662.

In 2018, Lacey City Council signed a four-phase ILA with Thurston, Olympia and Tumwater County to begin the process of developing region-wide climate action goals and policies through a regional climate mitigation plan. Phases 1 to 3 took place from 2018 to 2021.