Wednesday, August 18, 2010

PEG's Latest Salvo on Energy Audit Liens

Last week over 100 district residents who earlier this year took advantage of an offer of a free home energy audit received a letter telling them that due to failure of the DC government to pay for the audits, there would be a lien placed on their homes. The letter came from JoAnn Spence, Vice President of Potomac Environmental Group (PEG), the company that performed the audits. When homeowners complained on the Cleveland Park Listserv and in other media outlets, Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh looked into the situation and found that the company had not actually filed any liens – nor did it have any legal right to do so.

According to an article in the Washington Post,  PEG remains in a contract dispute with the District government over payment for the audits. While Cheh demanded that PEG apologize to homeowners for the scare tactic of the threatened lien, just today some homeowners received a new letter from PEG Vice President JoAnn Spence that is far from apologetic. Here’s what one homeowner had to say after he read VP Spence’s latest missive:

PEG's Latest Salvo on Energy Audit Liens

Today I received a letter from JoAnn Spence, VP at PEG, the DDOE contractor that conducted home energy audits for about 100 DC residents. The letter is worth about as much as the earlier one that stated that a lien had been placed on my home for the District's alleged failure to pay the cost of the audits. This time, JoAnn states in part, "PEG is reviewing the matter with its counsel but, for the time being, will take no further action in pursuing a lien" since the DC government claims that PEG may not file liens against these homeowners.

She fails to mention that she allegedly placed liens on all audited homes and fails to indicate whether such liens were removed. Her letter does not give an inch - she still combatively claims DC is responsible and is wrong on all counts. She "regrets this situation" but fails to apologize for her earlier idle threats and harassment of audited homeowners. She concludes that "PEG regrets this situation but notes that it has performed all contractual and other obligations." She ends with a not-so-subtle threat: "PEG reserves all rights" but fails to define what rights to which she refers.

It is also curious to note that JoAnn Spence is out of the office for the next few days. I imagine that her absence is purely coincidental with the release and receipt of this letter!

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