Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

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April 10, 2013

Duke Energy launches new economic development program in Indiana

 

Duke Energy is revamping its economic development program to improve opportunities for communities to attract jobs and capital investment in Indiana.

The company’s “Site Readiness Program,” which replaces the former Community Growth Partnership Grant Program, provides funding and expertise to help communities identify, assess, improve and increase awareness of industrial sites in the Duke Energy Indiana service territory. Between three and five projects may be selected for this program annually.

“For many years, Duke Energy has worked enthusiastically with the communities we serve to attract new industries and businesses to Indiana,” said Bart Beal, Duke Energy Indiana vice president of community relations and economic development, in a press release. “This new program works to improve a community’s competitive edge by giving more certainty for businesses in locating and developing projects quickly.”

The Site Readiness Program is not a site certification program, but rather helps advance prime sites for further development opportunities. However, a site that has successfully completed the program recommendations will have also completed the initial steps required for the state’s “Shovel Ready” certification.

Once a prospective industrial site is selected, Duke Energy will arrange for a nationally-recognized site selection consultant to conduct an initial site assessment through an in-depth meeting and tour with local economic development officials. A separate engineering firm will complete a more detailed assessment and conceptual plan. Finally, a detailed report about the site’s viability and recommendations to improve site readiness will be provided to local community officials.

Under the program, Duke Energy may invest up to $30,000 per approved property. The funding includes the initial consultant evaluation, engineering studies, final recommendation report, a full-color fact sheet, as well as an opportunity for a matching grant of up to $10,000 to implement the recommendations. Implementing the recommendations will classify the site as a Duke Energy “Build Ready” site.

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