Technical Assistance

Intro Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Finance Course

Alaska Industrial Development and Export AuthorityBaker Tilly Virchow KrauseBNY MellonBricker & Eckler LLPBryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLPBusiness OregonCohnReznickFBT Project Finance Advisors LLCFifth Third BankFrost Brown Todd, LLCHawkins Delafield & Wood LLPIce Miller LLPKeyBanc Capital MarketsKutak Rock LLPMcCarter & English, LLPMcGuireWoodsMuniCap, Inc.NW Financial Group, LLCPetros PACE FinanceSB Friedman Development AdvisorsStern BrothersStifel NicolausU.S. BankWells Fargo SecuritiesWilmington TrustZ. The Bond Buyer


Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) is an emerging financing tool designed to catalyze energy efficiency improvements on industrial, commercial and residential structures. These programs help communities to reduce their energy use, lower energy costs and lessen environmental impacts. PACE uses special assessment districts to allow for the cost of energy efficiency improvements to be paid for over time through the property owner's tax payments.

The Intro Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Finance Course will explore the process of creating, operating and maintaining a community based PACE program. This two day course will feature a comprehensive overview of PACE including program design, capital markets analysis, investor attraction, legal and regulatory considerations, market potential, operations and much more. CDFA’s Intro PACE Finance Course will put your community on the path to energy independence while creating jobs and improving the environment.

This course qualifies for the CDFA Training Institute's Development Finance Certified Professional (DFCP) Program. Start down the road to personal and professional advancement today.

Course Objectives

  • Learn the basics of PACE, how it functions and why it is important for energy improvements
  • Tell the difference between the needs of commercial versus residential properties
  • Follow the process of setting up a PACE district from start to finish
  • Grasp an understanding of energy bonds and their purpose in providing revenue
  • Discover the many roles involved in completing a successful PACE program
  • Learn how to implement a PACE program in your community
  • Ascertain a knowledge of the financing terms, regulations, and guidelines
  • Hear recommended practices from a number of projects and case studies throughout the country

Topics Covered

  • How PACE works
  • Why use PACE as a financing tool
  • Addressing barriers to PACE implementation
  • Financing process & terms
  • Important regulations & guidelines
  • Management structures
  • How to create a PACE program for a community
  • Example PACE programs from start to finish
  • Residential vs. Commercial
  • PACE Bonds
  • Eligible PACE Products
  • Players involved – designer, administer, contractor, investor, financier, property owner
  • Marketing your PACE program
  • Finding potential investors and contractors
  • Lender consent process

Who Should Attend?

  • Bond issuers
  • Economic development professionals
  • Community development professionals
  • Broker, dealers and underwriters
  • Elected officials
  • Government and nonprofit finance officers
  • Corporate trustees
  • Legal counsel
  • Underwriters
  • Commercial bankers
  • Attorneys
  • Accountants
  • Financial Advisors
  • Policy Makers

Course Advisor

Brian Farnen Brian Farnen
Secretary & CDFA PACE Finance Course Advisor
Connecticut Green Bank
General Counsel & Chief Legal Officer
As General Counsel and Chief Legal Officer for the Connecticut Green Bank, Brian directs all legal, legislative and regulatory affairs for the nation’s first green bank established in July 2011, a global leader in renewable and energy efficiency... (More)


The following is the preliminary agenda for this course. This agenda will be updated and modified slightly to accommodate speakers and content. However, the main areas of content as outlined in this agenda will be covered.

7:30 – 8:00 amContinental Breakfast & Registration

8:00 – 8:15 amWelcome & Overview

Welcome participants, introduce CDFA and set the stage for the course.

8:15 – 9:00 amUnderstanding PACE

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing is taking hold across the country through several innovative programs. Designed to support the expansion of energy efficiency installations in industrial, commercial, and residential buildings, PACE programs incentivize reduction in energy usage by paying for up-front improvements through assessments on property tax bills over time. This session will explain the basic concepts of PACE and how it is beneficial for the energy industry.

9:00 – 10:00 amLegal, Policy & Regulatory Considerations

In order for PACE programs to be successful, there are a complex set of legal requirements and financial guidelines that must be taken into consideration. These policies allow the tool to function as well as bring about financial viability for the properties involved. During this session, industry representatives will outline the legal and policy necessities that must be met for successful implementation of PACE.

10:00 – 10:15 amBreak

10:15 – 11:00 amPACE Players Involved and Their Roles

There are many players involved in the implementation of PACE programs including the designer, administer, contractor, investor, financier, property owners and more. For example, why is it so important to get a contractor on board at the very beginning? How should the community attract investors and what can they do to make the program more appealing? This session will open the discussion between all of the professionals that normally collaborate for a successful PACE program.

11:00 am – 12:00 pmPACE Financing Options

There are a number of capitalization options for the initial investments into a PACE district, including bonds, grants, loans, and more. This session will explore the many starting funds that can be used, as well as focusing on the process of issuing PACE bonds.

12:00 – 1:00 pmLunch Session: Residential vs. Commercial Considerations

The goal of this session is to discern the difference in financing mechanisms needed for various zoning areas within a community. The laws and financial needs vary widely between commercial and residential properties and panelists will compare and contrast these needs for a better understanding of PACE as a whole.

1:00 – 1:15 pmBreak

1:15 – 2:30 pmPACE Program Management

The goal of this course is to provide attendees with the knowledge necessary to implement successful PACE programs in your own community. During this session, panelists will share detailed directions on realizing PACE district implementation including administrative needs, marketing, contractor certification, staff needs, loan servicing and SID approval.

2:30 – 3:30 pmPACE - CASE Studies

As the course comes to an end, the main ideas and process as a whole are wrapped up in shared case studies of PACE programs that have taken off throughout the country. A variety of zones, states, and innovative programs will be demonstrated.

5:00 pmAdjourn


Check back for upcoming course dates or email CDFA to find out when this course will next be offered.


The Intro Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Finance Course qualifies for the CDFA Training Institute's Development Finance Certified Professional (DFCP) Program. Start down the road to personal and professional advancement today.

Register before September 16, 2016 for Early-Bird Rates.
Early Bird Rates
CDFA Member: $550
Non-Member: $825
Standard Rates
CDFA Member: $600
Non-Member: $875