Thompson, Agriculture Department, North Central Regional Planning and State Environmental Protection to Host Energy Grant Workshop

July 6, 2009
Press Release

Washington, D.C.—U.S. Representative Glenn `GT’ Thompson, R-Howard, today announced he will co-sponsor a workshop detailing how to apply for energy grants both on the state and federal levels.

The workshop will be held from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Thursday, July 9, 2009 in the teleconference room at the North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning & Development Commission, 651 Montmorenci Road, Ridgway.
North Central also is sponsoring the workshop in conjunction with the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development program and the State Department of Environmental Protection. Both USDA and DEP are the organizations who fund many of the grants for new product development, energy efficiency and energy applications.

“Anyone who has ever applied for government grants knows that the process can be cumbersome and not easily understood,” said Thompson.  “The aim of this workshop is to have the folks who award the grants explain what they are looking for when they evaluate applications and to help people understand how to fill out the paperwork required.  We hope this will help people navigate the process,  instead of giving up when they hit a stumbling block.”

Barry Mayes, who handles DEP and municipal services for North Central commented, "North Central is pleased to work with Congressman Thompson, his staff, USDA and the Pennsylvania DEP to bring timely and relevant information regarding energy funding that may be available to business and industry in our region. The emphasis of this seminar is to make our local business and industry aware of what is/will be available through the stimulus package that was approved at the federal level and to help support regional businesses and organization interested in funding options for new product development, energy efficiency and future energy applications.”

Robert Schoenfeldt, area director, USDA Rural Development Northwest Area Office, said, “Our nation’s farmers and ranchers, forest owners, businesses and rural communities should lead the way in creating a new-energy economy and producing more of our nation’s power through renewable sources and energy conservation.  Right now we have the unique opportunity to spur economic development, improve our environment, and create jobs domestically by replacing our dependence on fossil fuels with energy-efficient biofuels and the use of alternative forms of energy as well as energy conservation measures. The USDA – Rural Development is committed to ensuring that rural America leads this effort.”

Thompson’s office has heard from a number of people who have for-profit businesses who would like help with grant applications.