There is now a government grant program that provides cash assistance to energy production companies in place of earned tax credits. The new funding creates additional upfront capital, enabling companies to create jobs and begin construction that may have been stalled until now.
This grant program has been put in place as an "investment in our long-term energy needs while creating jobs in communities around the country. This renewable energy program will spur the manufacture and development of clean energy in urban and rural America, allowing us to protect our environment, create good jobs and revitalize our nation's economy."
According to a spokesperson, "These grants will help America's businesses launch clean energy projects, putting Americans back to work in good construction and manufacturing jobs. The initiative will help double our renewable energy capacity over the next few years and make sure America leads the world in creating the clean energy economy of the future."
This grant program is expected to provide more than $3 billion in financial support for clean energy projects by providing direct payments in lieu of tax credits. These payments will support an estimated 5,000 bio-mass, solar, wind, and other types of renewable energy production facilities in all regions of the country over the life of the program. As a result of this first round of funding, more than 2,000 Americans will have access to jobs in the renewable energy industry – both in construction and in manufacturing – while moving the nation closer to meeting the Administration's goal of doubling renewable energy generation in the next few years.
The Treasury Department opened the application process for the program on July 31, 2009 and is today making the first awards in half the statutorily mandated turnaround time of 60 days (what this means is that it took only 60 days for the grant recipients to receive the direct money payments!).
Some of the companies that have already received these grant awards include:
- A wheat farm in Oregon received over $47 Million Dollars in project funding!
- A wind farm in Texas has received over $100 Million Dollars!
As a side note - It seems as though a number of companies outside of the United States has been receiving a big chunk of this grant money. One company in Spain received over $250 Million Dollars!
Another interesting note about this particular grant program is that it has no cap - which means that there seems to be no limit on the maximum amount of grant money that can be received!
Basically what this means is that if your business is one that provides energy production then your business may be eligible to apply for this particular grant program.
This state program is for a social entrepreneurship program. So far three of the 12 recipients will be awarded $10,000 grants from the state to jumpstart their new business plans.
The finalists will meet once a month for the next six months to develop ideas on how to expand their services or offer completely new services. During this time, the groups will be meeting with a consulting firm that will help each organization with a business plan, financial analysis and feasibility assessment.
Projects that the nonprofits are pursuing include a substance abuse rehab facility, workforce development, a new cord blood bank, domestic violence prevention, community revitalization and a paint recycling program. The state funding that will go to the three final organizations is expected to act as a catalyst to draw more funding from private investors.
(For more information about investors, please refer to The Investors Bulletin Board)
The other nine finalists will at least have a tool to help them raise capital. according to one of the program's spokespeople, "Many of the organizations just don’t have time to sit down and make a business plan to help them expand".