Maine Senator Visits Mathews Brothers
Mathews Brothers Co. hosted Maine Senator Olympia Snowe last week, showing her its latest technology in highly-insulating window products. Also invited was Rich Walker, president and CEO of the American Architectural Manufacturers Association, who helped make the case for strengthening tax credits for energy efficient windows and doors.
Sen. Snowe serves as the ranking member of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, which considers proposed legislation, messages, petitions and other matters related to the Small Business Administration. She is also known as a past supporter of tax credits for energy efficient home upgrades.
|Sen.Snowe with Mathews Brothers' Randy Hall, center, and Scott Hawthorne.|
On her visit to the 150-year-old company, she stressed the importance of strengthening small businesses for the economy as a whole. "The only way you can do that is making sure that the small businesses are preserved and insulated you know, from any of the policies that come out of Washington that could effect their futures and we have to protect them from more regulations and more taxes," she told WABI 5, the local television station.
“As the federal government plays an increasingly large role in encouraging new technology and subsidizing efficient building products, this interaction with Senator Snowe was a valuable time to express the need for continued growth in energy-efficient fenestration products,” says Walker. He reports that Senator Snowe expressed interest in returning the 25C tax credit for energy-efficient windows to the $1,500 amount which expired last year, and that in the budgeting for various tax credits, the window tax credits lost out to ethanol and wind turbines in the tax extender bill that was passed in December 2010.
Bob Maynes, director of marketing and international sales at Mathews Brothers, says Snowe discussed "the importance of small businesses and how incentives like tax credits for energy-efficient residential upgrades benefit both small businesses as well as the national initiative of more efficient structures.” He adds that New England has the oldest housing stock in the U.S. and, therefore, has much to gain from the tax credits that would help to fund the renovation and retrofitting of older homes.
“While there is a need for across-the-board energy innovation in the U.S., window replacement is unique in that it provides immediate energy savings to homeowners and jobs and increased revenue for window manufacturers,” Walker notes.
As a follow-up to the tour, future meetings are planned with the senator’s staff to revisit the 25C tax credits.