Marcelyn Love 217/558-1542

 Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity announces $191,000 renewable energy grant to JF Family Partnership

Grant supported by Federal Recovery Funds

EDWARDSVILLE � Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) Director Warren Ribley today announced that JF Family Partnership will receive $191,000 through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to promote the use of solar energy at their JF Electric division headquarters. Director Ribley made the announcement today at an event at the company�s headquarters in Edwardsville. He was joined by State Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton); State Representative Jay Hoffman (D-Collinsville); Mayor Gary Niebur, City of Edwardsville; Representatives from J.F. Electric Incorporated; and Art Meiner, IBEW 309.

�Through the State�s Energy Plan, we�re helping to build a greener state while investing in a high-growth sector that will provide long-term economic vitality,� said Director Ribley. �We�re also helping forward-thinking companies like JF Electric to not only benefit its employees and short term bottom line, but also their long term success and to contribute to the well being of our environment.�

The grant was awarded through the Community Renewable Energy Program, a component of the State�s Energy Plan, administered by DCEO and funded by ARRA. It will be used for equipment and installation of a 75 kilowatt solar photovoltaic system on the roof of JF Electric, which will turn solar radiation into electricity.

The project will improve the company�s energy efficiency, reducing the amount of electricity expended by 95,000 kilowatt hours (kwh), nearly the annual usage of 10 average homes, and reducing the emission of carbon dioxide by 69 tons of CO2.

In addition, the project is expected to create and save 14 union jobs. The company also plans to train workers in solar installation and related areas, which will create new opportunities for �green job� growth in the region.

�We pride ourselves on our ability to offer our customers effective energy solutions,� said Greg Fowler, president of J.F. Electric Incorporated. �This grant will help us address our own energy needs by improving the efficiency of our operations. At the same time, we're helping to address the future needs of our company and our workforce by investing in training that will be critical to our growth in a 21st century economy.�

Over $100 million in federal recovery funding will be available for grants to implement the State�s Energy Plan, which is Illinois' most comprehensive effort to date to address the state�s energy production needs.