New Windsor - Orange County Business Accelerator
, in conjunction with Blue Springs
Energy, hosted a successful energy grant seminar recently that offered municipalities in Orange County
fast-track opportunities to apply for US Department of Energy grants
early in 2010.
On Thursday, Jan. 7, nearly two dozen municipal designates, from planning, engineering and other municipal departments, attended the Clean Energy Grant Seminar at the Accelerator offices at Stewart International Airport, Town of New Windsor. The Accelerator and Blue Springs, a consultant responsible for millions of dollars in yearly energy grants to municipalities across New York, offered the seminar free of charge.
“Attendees were representative of key stakeholders in the economic impact of stimulus money hitting the ground in Orange County,” said Peter Gregory, director of enterprise development at the Accelerator. “With a deadline of Feb. 17 for competitive NYSERDA grant applications, this seminar played a vital role in educating municipalities about the fast-track process. The Accelerator was pleased to introduce Blue Springs Energy, with a long, effective relationship with NYSERDA, as a go-to resource for Orange County municipalities.”
Blue Springs Energy principal Larry Simpson added, “Now is a great time for municipalities to upgrade existing buildings and equipment by taking advantage of NYSERDA grants, and we can help streamline the process. We received great feedback from interested parties at the seminar, and look forward to helping Orange County communities become benefactors in this great opportunity for stimulus funding.”
Orange County Business Accelerator Managing Director Michael DiTullo stated, “Attendees heard dynamic, informative lectures on grant-writing, funds availability and eligibility, and a host of other grant-related topics. This seminar proved to be a great asset to municipalities looking to take advantage of clean energy grant opportunities NYSERDA has made available early this year.”
Pat Courtney Strong, a coordinator for NYSERDA (New York State Energy & Research Development Authority), was a featured guest speaker. She offered information to municipal delegates with regards to the eligibility and application phases for the highly-competitive federal grant fund, soon to be distributed by NYSERDA through its Small Community Energy Efficiency & Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) Program.
Strong said, “Municipalities are focused on the federal stimulus funding now, and our office can help with that, but there are many money-saving programs offered by NYSERDA that will be there after this current grant opportunity passes. We are ready to help people access that technical and financial help, at any time.”
Examples of eligible projects include energy efficient retrofits, transportation efficiency measures, material conservation strategies, energy distribution technologies, energy efficient street and traffic signal lighting, renewable technologies for government buildings and regional planning activities.
Over 2,300 governments across the country vie for US Department of Energy grants on a yearly basis. Many municipalities may not be eligible for direct grants, but can still compete for a share of the $30 million in funding that NYSERDA receives from the federal government.
OCBA, located at 4 London Avenue in New Windsor at Stewart International Airport, is a business incubator program launched by the Orange County Industrial Development Agency (IDA). The incubator, 10,000 square feet of class-A high-tech research and development space, is designed to attract new entrepreneurial investment by providing businesses with below market occupancy costs, a menu of mentoring programs and a high-tech plug-and-play office environment.