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Weatherization Booming in Ohio

May 4, 2010

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio's weatherization program is leading the way for the rest of the nation, with thousands of homes improved to save energy since last summer and a number of unemployed Ohioans put back to work.

Federal stimulus money has helped to train and put people to work on houses that qualify for the state's home weatherization assistance program, and the new jobs are not just for the weatherization crews making the improvements. Tyunn Adams works in a Columbus warehouse, making sure Impact Community Action's weatherization crews get the supplies they need.

"It's good, you know, I'm around people that I like being around. I'm actually excited about being here. Plus, you know, it's good that I like to see other people getting help that need help."

Adams says he was unemployed for two months after losing his job as a driver for Whirlpool before he was hired by Impact. He was given specialized computer training for the new job.

Adams says it's always busy at his workplace. Since last summer, the agency has added eight weatherization crews and numerous support staff members.

"They go out and try to save energy on people's homes, try to weatherize their homes, to save costs on heating and electric bills."

The Buckeye state's weatherization program is the most productive in the country, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, with more than 10,000 houses, apartments and mobile homes getting energy-efficiency upgrades since last July. That's almost twice as many as the previous year.

Eric Mack, Public News Service - OH