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Pritzker Administration Launches $40 Million in Funding for the Energy Transition Community Grant Program as Part of CEJA

Press Release - Friday, December 16, 2022

Funding is available for communities who have been impacted by fossil fuel plant or coal mine closures or significant reductions

SPRINGFIELD - Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) today launched the Energy Transition Community Grant Program - an initiative under the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA) that provides funding to communities undergoing a significant energy transition. Based on criteria in CEJA, 22 areas have been identified as eligible to apply for the funding through the program. The program funds are designed to meet the needs of individual localities to address the economic and social impacts of plant closures and can be used on a variety of initiatives and investments, including workforce investments, housing support, business attraction efforts, and much more.

"This initiative will play a key role in delivering a 100% clean energy future in the state of Illinois," said Governor JB Pritzker. "The Energy Transition Community Grant Program is a locally focused effort tailored to each community's unique needs, providing each of them with the tools necessary for a smooth transition to clean energy production. To effectively combat climate change, we need to continue making investments like this one in every corner of our state."

Following a request for information (RFI) process where DCEO gathered feedback from key stakeholders, the state is launching phase 1 of the Energy Transition Community Grant Program, which asks eligible communities to submit documentation and express interest in the program. After localities submit their phase 1 documents and are approved for funding, they will prepare a detailed application with a budget and specific project plan that includes community input. Awards are anticipated to be executed beginning in May 2023, and grantees that remain eligible for the program will have the option to renew on a yearly basis rather than reapplying. CEJA allocates $40 million per year for this program until 2045.

"One of the ways CEJA prioritizes equity is by providing economic assistance to communities where energy plants or coal mines are closing or reducing production," said DCEO Director Sylvia I. Garcia. "From workforce support, to infrastructure investments, and financial assistance for residents, these funds are designed to meet the unique needs of impacted communities. We are grateful to the stakeholders who submitted feedback to ensure the program design meets the needs of those who are impacted the most."

Grants are designed to support localities to address the economic and social impacts on the community or region of plant or mine transition. Eligible uses of grant funds include, but are not limited to, workforce development, financial assistance for unemployed or underemployed residents, support for childcare, affordable housing and other uses outlined in the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), which can be found here.

"Passing CEJA was a massive undertaking and the opening of the Energy Transition Community Grant Program is just the beginning," said Sen. Cristina Castro (D-Elgin). "CEJA isn't just about lowering emissions, it is also about economic development, workforce training, and better future for all Illinois communities."

"As we move towards cleaner sources of energy, we can't forget the communities where fossil fuel industries have been major employers for decades," said Sen. Dave Koehler (D-Peoria). "The Energy Transition Community Grant Program makes sure that those communities, many of which are downstate and rural, will be able to take advantage of opportunities in the clean energy economy."

"Will County has been home to major energy production facilities for a long time, and our impacted communities will benefit from support," said Rep. Larry Walsh (D-Joliet). "That's why when the General Assembly crafted CEJA, we included significant funding to help communities that needed it most. This funding will go a long way to attract new industries, train workers, and ease family budgets."

Gathering feedback from key stakeholders is essential to securing equitable outcomes, and DCEO utilized a Request for Information (RFI) process to inform the program design. The feedback received helped DCEO identify impactful uses for funds, design the funding formula, and implement a flexible program structure where eligible counties/localities can submit joint applications. DCEO has issued RFIs for eight of 10 CEJA programs; additional information and updates can be found on DCEO's CEJA website.

In addition to a public announcement, DCEO is conducting individual outreach to impacted localities. The number of interested applicants who respond to the phase 1 application will determine the amount of funding available to each locality, with a total of $40 million provided among eligible applicants. Each award will be a minimum of $50,000 and will be determined using a formula that accounts for job loss and property tax revenue loss in impacted communities. Details on the funding formula can be found in the NOFO.

The 22 localities represent host localities where the eligible facility is located. Many facilities are located in unincorporated areas and therefore are assigned to the county. In addition to the localities identified, local governments within 30 miles of an eligible facility are able to apply with a letter of support from the city, village or county where the facility is located.

The following localities have been identified as eligible to apply for the Energy Transition Community Grant Program based on the latest available data and information on planned closures, closures, major reductions, and criteria outlined in CEJA. If a locality believes they may be eligible under CEJA and are not included below, they are encouraged to submit phase 1 application documents.


Name of Plant/Mine

Host City or County

Closure Year (actual or anticipated)

Creek Paum Mine

Jackson County

2016

Pattiki II

White County

2016

Wood River Power Plant

East Alton

2016

Galatia Mine

Saline County

2017

Gateway Mine

Randolph County

2017

New Future Portal Mine

Saline County

2017

Coffeen

Montgomery County

2019

Duck Creek

Fulton County

2019

Havana

Mason County

2019

Hennepin

Village of Hennepin

2019

Wildcat Hills Mine Complex

Saline County

2019

SIPC - Lake of Egypt

Williamson County

2020 (significant reduction, not closure)

City Water, Light & Power

Springfield

2021 (significant reduction, not closure)

E.D. Edwards Power Plant

Peoria County

2022

Joppa Steam Plant

Massac County

2022

Waukegan

Waukegan

2022

Will County

Romeoville

2022

Joliet Generating

Will County

2023

Baldwin Generating Center

Randolph County

2025

Kincaid Generation

Christian County

2027

Newton Power Plant

Jasper County

2027

Powerton Station

Tazewell County

2028




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