Funding Options for Commercial Energy Projects

 

 

 

 

PACE (Property-Assessed Clean Energy)

 

 

Maximum amount:

  • Up to 20% of property’s assessed value

Grant or loan?

  • Loan

 

Where does the money come from?

  • American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the Center for Energy and Environment. The St. Paul Port Authority and the Rural Minnesota Energy Board administer the program.

 

What does it pay for?

  • Energy efficiency projects

  • Water efficiency projects

  • Renewable energy projects

  • EV charging

 

Which businesses are eligible?

  • Commercial and industrial businesses

  • Non-profits, including churches

  • Owners of multi-family housing

 

How is it repaid?

  • The energy savings realized as a result of the funded project are calculated, and are then added as a separate item on the property tax assessment for a specified set of years. In this way, the business owner does not realize any increased cost of operations when repaying the loan, since the cost is offset by the value of the energy savings.

 

 

REAP (Rural Energy for America Program)

 

Maximum amount:

  • In loans: up to 75% of eligible project costs

  • In grants: up to 25% of eligible project costs

Grant or loan?

  • Both.

 

Where does the money come from?

  • USDA

 

What does it pay for?

  • Renewable energy systems

  • Energy efficient improvements (such as doors and windows, or high-efficiency heating systems)

 

Which businesses are eligible?

  • Rural small businesses (All Cook County businesses would qualify)

  • Agricultural producers with at least 50 percent of their income coming from agricultural operations

 

How is it repaid?

  • REAP loans are repaid in a conventional manner, similar to any other government loan, with terms negotiated between borrower and lender

 

 

 

 

 

 

BER (Business Energy Retrofit)

 

 

Maximum amount:

  • $0-$60,000

 

Grant or loan?

  • Grant

 

Where does the money come from?

  • IRRRB. BER is administered through the AEOA

 

What does it pay for?

  • BER funds are to be used to help small business owners with energy efficient improvements and upgrades to their buildings.

 

Which businesses are eligible?

  • Businesses within IRRRB region (includes all of Cook County)

  • Must have fewer than 100 employees

  • Additionally, “DBR” funds available to businesses located within certain distance from a city center’s main street

 

 

 

 

Energy Savings Funds for Nonprofits

 

$0-$100,000

 

Grant or loan?

  • Loan

 

Where does the money come from?

  • Minnesota Division of Energy Resources and the Center for Energy and Environment

 

What does it pay for?

 

  • An eligible improvement must be a modification to an existing building that is primarily intended to reduce energy consumption for the benefit of a nonprofit entity.

  • Must have a useful life that is greater than its simple payback period.

  • Must have a simple payback period that is no less than two (2) years and no greater than ten (10) years.

 

Which nonprofits are eligible?

  • Borrower must be a nonprofit entity exempt from taxes under the 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or an entity that leases an eligible facility to a nonprofit entity.

  • Facility must be an existing building occupied in whole or in part by a nonprofit entity to be eligible. 

 

If a loan, how is it repaid?

  • Rates starting at 3.75% (4.22% APR) for loan terms up to 5* years.

  • Rates starting at 5.5% (5.80% APR) for loan terms up to 10** years.

  • Closing fees apply.