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Avista Receives Stimulus Funds to Help Spokane County Customers Save Energy
State grants $1 million to establish a revolving loan fund to help interested residential and small business customers make recommended energy efficient improvements

SPOKANE, Wash., Dec. 23 // -- Avista announced today it is receiving $1 million of stimulus funding from the State of Washington Department of Commerce Credit Enhancement Program to establish a low-interest revolving loan fund to help its interested Spokane County customers make recommended energy efficiency improvements to their homes and small businesses.

Partnering with Avista to establish the revolving loan fund is Sustainable Local Investments Partners (SLIP), who will provide administrative services, process facilitation and outcome reporting. To access the revolving loan fund for energy efficiency improvements, an interested Avista customer in Spokane County must first participate in a commercial energy audit currently offered by Avista or in a new home audit program which the company will launch early next year.

Partnering with Avista on the new home energy audit program are the City of Spokane, City of Spokane Valley and Spokane County. The three local governments have pledged nearly $700,000 of support for the audit program from federal funds they received through the state's Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program. Avista will match the funds pledged by the three local governments. Together, these funds will help offset a portion of the cost for the professional audit for customers. The customer contribution to the audit will be partially offset by "leave behind" energy efficiency items such as compact fluorescent light bulbs, door sweeps and low-flow showerheads.

Interested homeowners will begin the process by completing an on-line energy audit at avistautilities.com, which will provide baseline information for the detailed on-site audit to be conducted by a certified energy auditor. These audits will provide homeowners with an analysis of ways to make their homes more energy efficient and will alert customers to Avista rebates and federal energy tax credits for which they may qualify. Customers will then be able to access the new low-interest loan fund to finance the recommended energy efficiency upgrades not covered by Avista rebates and tax credits.

"Enabling our customers to reduce their energy use is a major priority at Avista, and this funding can help make that happen," said Bruce Folsom, Avista's director of energy efficiency programming. "The energy audit and revolving loan program, with assistance from our program partners, will help our Spokane County customers turn their ideas into reality, and make energy efficiency upgrades achievable for home owners."

More details will be available when Avista and its program partners launch both the home energy audit and revolving loan fund programs in early 2010. Both programs will be available to Avista customers in Spokane County.

Avista Corp. is an energy company involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. Avista Utilities is our operating division that provides electric service to 353,000 homes and businesses and natural gas to 313,000 homes and businesses in three Western states, serving more than 492,000 customers. Avista's primary, non-regulated subsidiary is Advantage IQ. Avista stock is traded under the ticker symbol "AVA." For more information about Avista, please visit www.avistacorp.com.

Avista Corp. and the Avista Corp. logo are trademarks of Avista Corporation.

SOURCE: Avista Corp.

Web site: http://www.avistacorp.com/

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