Homestar, a $5 billion program that would award rebates to homeowners who make their residences more energy efficient, was added to the pared-down energy bill last week. While Homestar has widespread, bi-partisan support, the same can’t be said for other provisions of the parent bill, namely the proposed lifting of a $75 million liability cap on economic damages from an oil spill. Democrats say it’s a necessary reaction to the Gulf oil spill. Republicans charge it will hurt smaller oil companies by making it impossible to get insurance for offshore drilling.
Regardless of what side of the debate you’re on, it’s unfortunate that Homestar is caught in the congressional crosshairs.
Update: Politico.com is reporting this afternoon that Senate majority leader Harry Reid has pulled the plug on efforts to vote on offshore drilling reforms this week, ahead of the August recess. That means Homestar won’t come up again for vote until mid-September at the earliest.