Thursday, March 17, 2005
Michael Shore, MEDC
Power Station Could Be Catalyst for New Growth and Jobs
Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced that $19,000 in community development funding has been awarded to the city of McBain for alternative energy feasibility planning. The Missaukee County community is located east of Cadillac and south of Lake City.
The grant is being made available by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation with funds provided by the federal Community Development Block Grant program.
Electricity at the McBain Power Station is produced by burning waste wood combined with alternative fuels purchased from local suppliers. The study will identify methods of capturing hot water, steam and electricity from the facility's existing cycle of operation for use by the city's industrial/manufacturing firms. It will also determine the best way to transmit the new energy source to off-site locations as well as the costs associated with equipment, installation and operation. The city will contribute an additional $19,000 to finance the study.
"McBain city officials have long felt that wood fuel energy can provide local industry and processing firms an advantage with their utilities," McBain City Administrator and Economic Development Director Bob Jones said. "We are now able to confirm and quantify this prospect."
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation administers the state's Community Development Block Grant funds received from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. These funds are used to provide grants and loans to eligible counties, cities, villages and townships-typically those with populations less than 50,000-for economic development, community development and housing projects. Larger communities receive block grant funds directly from the federal government.
The MEDC is able to award approximately $50 million in federal CDBG funds each year. There are 1,655 local governments within the state eligible to apply for these funds. Projects are approved contingent upon compliance with state and federal requirements.
"Planning studies allow communities to best utilize their assets and prepare for the future," MEDC President and CEO Don Jakeway said. "The results will help McBain grow and capitalize on its progressive business climate."
In her 2005 State of the State address, Granholm emphasized the importance of making Michigan a global economic powerhouse in the 21st century, and specifically addressed the need to grow Michigan's alternative energy industry. Since January 2005 the Governor and the MEDC announced the creation or retention of more than 31,464 jobs as a result of targeted assistance provided by the MEDC.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life.