Grant Writing Help Available for Rural Renewable Energy Projects

Categories: Investment

If you are interested in applying for federal funds for rural renewable energy or energy efficiency projects, grant writing and other help is available. Last month the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development's Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency loan and grant program announced the availability of $11.4 million in grants and $176.5 million in loan guarantees.

With the first deadline just weeks away, three agencies stand by ready to help with the application process: the Wisconsin Rural Development Office in Stevens Point; Focus on Energy; and the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

Focus on Energy can provide general assistance for grant applicants; trouble shoot issues; provide background and lessons learned from previous grants; provide a support letter confirming the environmental benefits of the project as well as other assistance. The Focus on Energy contact is Larry Krom at 888-476-9534. For energy efficiency applications contact Richard Hasselman at 608-273-0182.

Depending on the type of project, DATCP can provide assistance ranging from financial help with business feasibility studies to business plans. A publication on where to go for business assistance in Wisconsin is also available. The DATCP contact is Carl Rainey at 608- 224-5139.

Rural Development can help applicants go through the process; explain the forms; explain what information is needed to increase the applicant's possibility to receive funding. Rural Development will also assist with determining eligibility of applicants as well as the eligibility of the technology they would like to install. The Rural Development contact is Kelley Oehler 715-345-7610.

Applications for grants must be completed and submitted to the USDA Rural Development State Office at 4949 Kirschling Court, Stevens Point WI 54481, postmarked no later than May 18. The deadline for submitting loan applications as well as for loan and grant combinations is July 2. More information is available in the March 22 Federal Register or by contacting the Rural Development State Office at 715-345-7610.

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