Funding Efforts for SolarBees Suffer Setback

 

Devils Lake District Swarms for Stimulus

DEQ funds destined for SolarBees are now unlikely due to an incomplete application. The DEQ application was the most promising of three funding sources applied for by the DLWID.  While this is good news, the project will remain on DEQ’s Intended Use Plan for three years giving the district two more bites at the apple.  Therefore it is still important to provide your comments as requested in our post, Call To Action–Write The DEQ.  In the interest of improving our message, please forward your comments to us at nosolarbees@gmail.com.  According to the article in the Newport News Times, published March 13th;

“The Devils Lake Water Improvement District’s application for a healthy chunk of stimulus funds was ranked No. 9 out of 162 statewide projects, but Oregon Department of Environmental Quality officials say the organization is unlikely to receive any federal money due to an incomplete application.”…

“On Friday, DEQ released a document listing 162 applications ranked in order of priority, requesting a total of $730,855,538, for a 30-day public comment period. The document states that projects only can be funded if they are ready to proceed.”…

“Ready to proceed includes satisfying all CWSRF requirements, including for example, a land use compatibility statement, an environmental review (if applicable) and documentation supporting compliance with the federal cross cutting authorities,” the document states. “An applicant is not considered ready to execute a loan agreement until all such requirements have been satisfied.” DLWID has not yet begun the process of seeking the required documentation.“

“We’ll probably get the stimulus funds around June 8,” said Jerry McAllister, a CWSRF program coordinator. “When the public has had 30 days for comment on the ranked list, we’ll take a few days to make final revisions.“ Once that’s finalized, we’ll look at who has all their paperwork in, and make a choice from that pool. Those that have their paperwork in will move across that line, and those that don’t will stay behind.”…

“Jaime Isaza, CWSRF regional project officer, said applicants were informed of the requirements early on. Gathering the necessary documentation is a time-consuming task, Isaza said, and some applicants hired extra staff to get it done in time. The Devils Lake application is missing all of its clearances from state and federal agencies,” Isaza said. “It’s a burden to get the documentation. A lot of the applicants are missing these papers. They wanted to wait until they saw the ranking. “That’s a decision each community has to make. Others decided not to wait and started working on getting their documentation approved early.” Isaza said it’s a shame that a highly ranked project like Devils Lake’s will not receive funding.“ I hate to say it, but it doesn’t look like Devils Lake is going to get the money,” he said. “I’m very disappointed that these communities decided to do it that way.”

Normally, CWSRF loans require matching funds and carry a 0.5 percent interest rate. stimulus funded loans come with a 50-percent principle forgiveness and 0 percent interest on the remainder. There is no matching fund requirement.  DLWID’s application will remain on the priority list for a three-year period. Although the district will not qualify for stimulus funds and its accompanying benefits, DLWID still has a chance to be approved for a regular CWSRF loan later. “The potential for getting 0 percent interest and 50 percent forgiveness of the loan may not be available,” Paul Robertson manager of DLWID said, “but if we don’t get funded on this cycle, then we may get funded in the next three years. The interest still will be below market rate.”



To review the entire article select the source link above.

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