Meet Gerard, the County’s PACE Program Manager

July 12, 2016
  |   2 Comments

Montgomery County passed Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Financing for commercial buildings in March 2015, and we’ve enlisted PACE Financial Servicing to manage the County’s PACE program. Meet Gerard Neely, Manager of Maryland’s Commercial PACE Program with PACE Financial Servicing, who is the County’s “boots on the ground” of the PACE program.

 

PFS Logo

 

Tell us what you think about PACE

What is your role with PACE Financial Servicing?

As manager of Maryland’s Commercial PACE program, I wear many hats. My core responsibility is to liaise between Montgomery County staff and stakeholders accessing the program –energy contractors, building owners, and capital providers – to help them prepare and submit their PACE applications to Montgomery County for approval. Also, I discuss PACE financing with property owners and contractors interested in the program and build momentum for the program in Montgomery County. While no day is ever the same, I very much enjoy talking with various stakeholders building excitement about PACE in the County.

 

What did you do before coming to PFS?

Prior to PFS, I worked for Nextility, a solar development and energy brokerage firm in Washington, DC. During my time at Nextility, I helped small businesses and property owners save money on their electricity and natural gas bills by taking advantage of energy deregulation. Additionally, I helped Nextility navigate regulatory issues in the deregulated energy marketplace. Prior to Nextility, I had the privilege to work for the UK Parliament and their efforts in reforming their electricity markets to reduce energy costs for consumers. Finally, I began my career in the world of local and state politics. Previously, I worked and volunteered on several congressional campaigns around the state of Maryland.

 

Photo of Gerard Neely, Manager of Maryland’s Commercial PACE Program

Gerard Neely, Manager of Maryland’s Commercial PACE Program

In your opinion, what is the most exciting element of PACE financing in Montgomery County?

The most exciting element of PACE in Montgomery County is its ability to remove barriers to accessing capital for energy savings measures for property owners who traditionally have struggled to secure financing. For example, at a national level, nonprofits and community-based organizations are the fast-growing submarket using PACE financing. While many of these organizations such as houses of worship and low-income multi-family housing have longed for these upgrades, they have lacked the funds to do so. Thanks to the leadership of Montgomery County, these organizations can now move forward with these upgrades though PACE financing.

 

What advice would you give to building owners considering PACE financing?

I would encourage building owners to compare PACE’s cash flow benefits vis-a-vis other traditional avenues of financing. PACE is a unique, custom-tailored financing solution for energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements, and it really provides amazing benefits to commercial property owners that traditional financing mechanisms may not. Additionally, I would highly encourage buildings owners to reach out to info@mc-pace.com if they have any questions about starting the PACE process.

 

What do you see on the horizon for PACE programs in the region? What’s next?

We continue to see increased interest in the program across the state and here in Montgomery County. In the County, I hope to see several projects completed by the time leaves begin to change this fall. In addition, I would look for several counties around Maryland to adopt the own PACE-enabling ordinances in the near future. It is an exciting time for PACE in the Free State!

 

There’s more to life than PACE – Tell us about yourself!

When you’re not administering PACE programs, what do you like to do?

My life revolves around sports and music. On the weekends, you’ll most likely find me up early watching English Primer League soccer (Come on Arsenal!). If I am not watching soccer or football, I am probably at a music venue in the DC/Montgomery County area.

 

Choose three words to describe yourself:

Lively, Affable, Inquisitive

Photo of Gerard Neely

Gerard Neely

 

Besides Montgomery County, where is your favorite place to visit?

London (Islington—the home of the world famous Arsenal Football Club to be exact!)

 

If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

I would love to have the ability to travel in time and see historical events in real-time.

 

This is our fourth post in our “Meet the People of PACE” series [previous posts introduce Jessica, Drew, and John]. To learn more about the County’s Commercial PACE Program, visit DEP’s PACE website or sign-up for DEP’s Energy News.



2 comments on "Meet Gerard, the County’s PACE Program Manager"

  1. Hi Gerard, I would love to talk with you about installing a new heating/ac unit for our restaurant in Oakland, Md.

  2. Jeff Wilder says:

    Gerard, on August 11th you wrote to me (Rockville Motel Associates LLC..of which I am the managing member and 92 1/2% owner.). The letter described the PACE program and how the Comfort Inn was advantaged by it.

    At our 182 room BW Plus Hotel & Suites at 1251 West Montgomery/Rockville, I’ve an old circulating water based HVAC system that is sorely in need of modernization. Our property is worth a lot more than our $6M mortgage and our utility bills are well above national average. We are an excellent credit.

    What I most need help with is to decide what the most cost-effective HVAC modernization would be…then, once agreed upon, do it. I need an honest, profit-disinterested, professional to guide me and believe that YOU are that person.

    I would greatly value your assistance and am most certainly a prime candidate for the PACE program…understanding that accepting the loan is secondary to deciding exactly what should be done for maximum PROVABLE energy savings.

    Please call ANYTIME…I’m at 201-960-8286..Jeff Wilder

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *