The Minnesota Department of Commerce, Office of Energy Security has awarded a $50,000 economic stimulus grant to help businesses and property owners in Swift County make upgrades that save energy and cut utility costs.
The grant, awarded to the Swift County RDA, will start the RDA Energy Loan Fund (RDA ELF) for small businesses in Swift County. Initially loans will be made at zero percent interest to help jumpstart local businesses ability to finance energy-saving improvements to their facilities. Utility-bill savings can then be used to repay the loan.
“Increasing the energy efficiency of our buildings is a good investment for taxpayers, Swift County businesses, and the environment,” said Jennifer Gruis, Swift County RDA Director. “The projects made possible by the financing effort will pay dividends for many years to come.”
Projects eligible for loans include purchase and installation of energy-efficient equipment, windows and doors; installation and use of renewable energy technologies; and projects that reduce energy waste.
Swift County RDA Members estimate that by leveraging fund dollars with utility rebates, grant programs, and other Swift County loan programs; 5-10 loans will be made from the initial funding with more financing available as loans are repaid.
The grant to Swift County was awarded as part of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program (EECBG) from the U.S. Department of Energy and the Minnesota Department of Commerce through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). EECBG helps governments and nonprofit groups improve the energy efficiency of buildings and vehicles, reduce fossil fuel emissions, and create or retain jobs.
Swift County RDA is serving as fiscal agent for the grant and will administer the loan fund. For information on how to apply for the RDA-ELF contact the RDA at 320-842-4769 or email@example.com