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Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Doing good and creating jobs

State low-interest loan helps to make school conditions better

General Treasurer Seth Magaziner and Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank CEO Jeff Diehl joined state and Cranston officials in touring a Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank (RIIB) financed project at Edgewood Highland School. The tour was led by Cranston School Superintendent Jeannine Nota and Principal Marlene Gamba.

Thanks to a $2.2 million low-interest loan from the RIIB, Edgewood Highland School is upgrading its outdated heating and air conditioning system.

"When I proposed an infrastructure bank for the state, this is exactly the type of project I hoped it would finance," said Treasurer Magaziner. "Not only does this financing provided support construction and building jobs that our state needs, it will also help our local municipalities save on utility costs."

 "Our school building is nearly 50 years old and our HVAC was in desperate need of an upgrade," said Principal Gamba. "The loan provided by Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank has improved the educational climate for students, while also reducing energy bills for the school."

The RIIB is providing financing that is supporting Rhode Island's labor force, while also energizing the state's clean energy economy.

"Not only has this project improved the learning environment for our elementary school students, the new system is more energy efficient, which will save taxpayers money over the long term", said Cranston School Superintendent Jeannine Nota.

During its first round of financing, Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank has provided $17.2 million in financing to support a variety of energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in Pawtucket, Providence, Cranston, West Warwick, Westerly and Newport.

"The Efficient Buildings Fund is a great tool for municipalities. The low-cost financing provided by the program assists cities and towns in making much needed improvements to their energy infrastructure that reduce energy costs long term and our reliance on fossil fuels", said Jeff Diehl, CEO of Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank. "We look forward to working with the City of Cranston on other projects in the future."

The first round of projects financed through Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank's Efficient Buildings Fund program is expected to create or support 263 jobs and ultimately save local taxpayers more than $20 million in energy costs.


The Infrastructure Bank is now accepting applications for Round 2 of funding. The application period for Round 2 will close at noon on December 21, 2016. 

Eligible public entities include municipalities, public schools, quasi-state entities and other local governmental units, such as drinking water or wastewater service providers. 

Projects eligible for financing include cost-effective energy efficiency measures and the installation of renewable energy infrastructure, including solar panels and wind turbines. The Round 2 application can be found here: http://www.energy.ri.gov/RIEBF/