DELPHOS – With a few strokes of a pen on Wednesday, Delphos became an Energy District. Safety Service Director Shane Coleman signed the paperwork for an $8,000 loan through the newly-former energy district for an energy-efficient lighting project at the water treatment plant.

“This is a small project that will save the city money on its energy use and it kicks off the Energy District,” Coleman said. “Now it’s open to anyone who has qualifying projects. This funding can fill in the gap for larger projects for businesses and industry.”

The local energy board consists of Mayor Josh Gillespie, Coleman, Auditor Adam Kayser, Sue Gerker, Chamber Executive Director Lindsey Lane and Cindy Leis from the Allen Economic Development Group.

Those eligible to apply for the financing include industrial/manufacturing, commercial/retail; government/municipal; educational (K-12 and college/university); healthcare; and residential coming in the third quarter of this year.

The Energy District is sponsored by the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority through its Betterbuildings Northwest Ohio. The program started in 2011 with a $15 million grant from the Department of Energy. Of that $15 million, $3 million was put into a revolving loan fund and $10 million was placed in Bond Reserves and $2 million was used right away.

Financing will come from the BBNWO’s Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) which provides financing for projects conserving energy and generation savings through equipment retrofits to existing facilities and building systems. Financing gets repaid via a special assessment on property.

To be eligible, the proposed improvements must demonstrate energy savings; renewable energy can be incorporated to government facilities; and for commercial projects, renewable energy must be a part of a broader energy efficiency effort.

Eligible projects and equipment include: Retrofit — lighting, energy management systems, high efficiency HVAC (ground source heat pumps), building envelope, steam systems/boilers (heat and industrial usage), refrigeration systems and solar hot water. Energy Projects — waste energy recovery (absorption chillers, process reviews), distribution and renewable power generation, electrical distribution upgrades (power factor correction, transformer replacement) , district heating/cooling systems - geothermal and combined heat/power systems.

Energy project financing features include zero out-of-pocket expense, competitive interest rates (5.5-6.5 percent), financing terms up to 15 years, energy saving to pay for it, include rebates and tax incentives, $25,000-$9,000,000 projects and includes all project costs.

For more information, contact Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority Business Development Manager Teresa Snyder, PhD. at 419-260-1277 or tsnyder@toledoport.org.