H.R. 2126, Better Buildings Act of 2014

Cost Estimate
February 20, 2014

As ordered reported by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on January 28, 2014

H.R. 2126 would amend federal law aimed at improving the energy efficiency of commercial office buildings. The legislation would require the General Services Administration (GSA) to develop model leasing provisions to encourage energy efficiency in privately owned buildings with federal tenants. The bill also would establish a program similar to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program to promote energy efficiency in buildings leased to the federal government. Finally, the bill would require the Department of Energy (DOE) to prepare a report to the Congress on energy efficiency in commercial buildings.

Since the 1970s, many laws and policies have been enacted to reduce energy consumption. According to the GSA, most of the provisions of the bill are broadly consistent with existing law and practices. As a result, CBO does not expect that enacting H.R. 2126 would significantly affect agencies’ administrative costs or result in significant additional investments by the federal government in energy savings initiatives. Optimizing the use of energy conservation measures in buildings leased by the government could eventually reduce federal spending by lowering occupancy costs, but CBO does not expect agencies would realize any significant savings from such efforts during the next few years. Enacting the bill would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.

H.R. 2126 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.