Governor Beshear Announces $52 million in Federal Stimulus funds for Kentucky Energy Programs

ARRA dollars support broad sectors of Kentucky’s economy

FRANKFORT, KY – May 21, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Underscoring his vision to make Kentucky a national leader in energy, Governor Steve Beshear announced today a $52 million blueprint to create nearly 600 jobs by increasing efficiency and renewable energy efforts in schools, farms, homes, government buildings and private sector initiatives throughout the Commonwealth.

The funding for the plan is part of the federal stimulus plan or the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

Kentucky’s allocation for energy initiatives and planning is $52,533,000 that will be utilized over the next three years, pending approval by the U.S. Department of Energy in the next several months.

“The programs that will receive the funding will have a wide-ranging and positive impact on the Commonwealth both immediately and for years to come,” Gov. Beshear said today in announcing the energy blueprint. “These programs are designed to support Kentucky’s seven-point strategy for energy independence that will position Kentucky as a national leader in production, conservation and efficiency efforts.

The Governor’s comprehensive energy plan, released last year, calls for significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions while creating some 40,000 jobs tied to energy production and conservation between now and 2025.

Specifics of the state’s proposed stimulus funding plan include:

  • Purchasing and installing energy efficiency or renewable energy equipment and materials for the retrofit of a state-of-the-art Advanced Battery Strategic Planning facility and the proposed advanced battery manufacturing facility to be built in Glendale, Ky.
  • Dramatically improving energy efficiency in government buildings by installing an Energy Management System and establishing the Kentucky Green Bank, a revolving loan fund for energy efficiency improvements.
  • Expanding the Kentucky Energy Efficiency program in public schools, as well as the Green and Healthy Schools program, to help Kentucky schools better manage energy use, while also educating students, faculty and staff on efficiency and conservation efforts.

“Strengthening these programs will support approximately 150 new and retained jobs through a system of local energy managers, regional coordinators, technicians and engineers that will be available to guide school districts through the process of implementing energy efficiency programs,” said Len Peters, secretary of the Energy and Environment Cabinet.  “These programs help us reach our goals of increasing energy efficiency and significantly reducing our carbon output over the next 15 years.”

  • Expanding an industrial/ commercial sustainability program modeled after an U.S. Department of Energy Program (USDOE) to increase the number of onsite energy efficiency assessments at industrial and commercial facilities.
  • Supporting a Governor’s Office of Agriculture Policy initiative for a new on-farm energy efficiency and production program that will provide grants to farmers for energy assessments and for technical assistance in applying for USDA grants, thus creating increased funding opportunities for Kentucky farmers.
  • Exploring the development of smart grid concepts and their application in the state and establish a Home Performance with Energy Star program, which will provide energy assessments and improvement recommendations in existing homes.

Upon USDOE approval Kentucky will be authorized to spend up to 50 percent of the total allocation with the remaining balance being authorized based on demonstrated performance.   The ARRA funds must be expended by 2012.

For more information on State Energy Program funds awarded under the ARRA see the attached fact sheet and visit www.kentuckyatwork.ky.gov.

Contact:
Jay Blanton
Jill Midkiff
502-564-2611

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