CHICAGO – July 29, 2009. Governor Pat Quinn signed a financing bill that provides a state-backed guarantee supporting construction of renewable energy and clean coal projects that will create jobs across Illinois.
“Illinois leads the way at protecting our environment while developing new green jobs for the 21st Century,” said Governor Quinn. “This legislation boosts investment in clean energy and sustainable practices that reduce our carbon footprint while generating greater employment opportunities.”
SB 1906 clarifies the Illinois Finance Authority’s (“IFA”) existing bonding authority for renewable energy and clean coal projects. Under this law, the State and IFA will work in partnership to make available up to $3 billion in guaranteed energy project financing for qualified renewable energy and clean coal efforts. In addition, the law also increases the state and IFA’s loan guarantee from $75 million to $225 million for agricultural businesses. It also provides guarantees to back qualified renewable energy projects such as wind, biodiesel or biomass initiatives that are related to agriculture.
This law also positions Illinois to compete for federal stimulus loan guarantees designated for the new green projects.
"This legislation will help Illinois companies take a leading role in the green energy industry," said Sen. David Koehler (D-Peoria), sponsor of the legislation. "It will create new jobs and move our state's economy in a promising direction."
“This is another great example of why Illinois will continue to be a national leader in taking advantage of all of our natural resources in a responsible way, while expanding our economy and creating good new jobs,” said Mike T. Carrigan, president of the Illinois AFL-CIO.
“It is an important day for clean, renewable energy throughout Illinois, which will protect our environment and power our economy,” said Howard Learner, executive director of the Environmental Law & Policy Center in Chicago.
At the bill signing ceremony, Governor Quinn was joined by Warren Ribley, director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity; William A. Brandt Jr., chairman of the Illinois Finance Authority; Dr. Roger Herrin, chairman of the Illinois Finance Authority Energy Committee; Rep. Deborah L. Graham (D-Oak Park); Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D-Des Plaines).
The Illinois Finance Authority (IFA) is a self-financed, state authority principally engaged in issuing taxable and tax-exempt bonds, making loans, and investing capital for businesses, non-profit corporations, agriculture and local government units statewide. For more information: www.il-fa.com.