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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

State, cities, schools, businesses await energy dollars

From an article by Tom Content in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

Wisconsin businesses and governments should receive at least $276 million, and possibly much more, in energy-related funds from the economic stimulus bill that President Barack Obama signed Tuesday, according to the state agency in charge of the recovery.

Energy provisions in the stimulus package include funding for efforts to make buildings more efficient and to boost the use of renewable energy sources such as wind turbines and solar panels.

Also included are tax credits for manufacturers of energy technologies and for consumers who improve the energy efficiency of their homes or buy plug-in hybrid cars. For instance, homeowners will get credits of up to $1,500 for energy upgrades, such as purchases of qualified furnaces and insulation.

Wisconsin is likely to receive $146 million to weatherize some of the most inefficient buildings in the state. An additional $130 million or so is expected under two kinds of grants for energy-efficiency and other projects, said David Jenkins, who is handling energy projects for the state Office of Recovery and Reinvestment.

"In addition to that money, there are 11 different energy- and energy-science-related competitive grant programs, some of which hold promise for Wisconsin," he said. "Our companies and universities and technical colleges are going to do a good job of competing for that money."

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