Maine Announces $6.5 Million in Grants to Enhance Grid Infrastructure for Rural Businesses

Source: NASEO

On February 12, Governor Janet Mills announced nearly $6.5 million in grant awards under the Maine Jobs & Recovery Plan, which pledges nearly $1 billion in federal American Rescue Plan funds towards economic development in Maine, to fund upgrades to the state's electrical grid that boost grid reliability and resilience for Maine businesses. These funds will enable businesses, particularly those in rural areas, to upgrade existing energy systems with components that bridge gaps to accessing the electric grid, expand operating capacity, and improve plant efficiency.

Administered through a collaboration between the Governor’s Energy Office (GEO), the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), and the Maine Technology Institute (MTI), the competitive grant process was launched in September 2023 and has since awarded six Maine businesses as recipients. The awarded businesses, their locations in Maine, and their respective grant amounts are as follows:

  • Five Pillars Butchery, Unity, $55,000
  • Heiwa Tofu, Rockport, $47,500
  • The Holy Donut, Inc., Arundel, $42,000
  • Kingfish Maine Inc., Jonesport, $4,000,000
  • Maine Plywood USA, Bingham, $993,608
  • Tanbark Molded Fiber Products, Inc., Saco, $1,336,892

These grants will be used towards power supply upgrades from single-phase to three-phase to support reliable energy loads for expanded industrial processes across several of the awarded businesses, integrating power generating capacity in one of the businesses, and other measures that add to the number of employment opportunities across all the awarded businesses. More information about the awarded businesses can be found here.