APS, SRP and TEP announce $1 million in grant opportunities for impacted communities in Northeastern Arizona

Three Arizona energy providers have pledged a combined $1 million to help secure grant funding for communities that could be impacted by the retirement of coal-fired power plants.

Arizona Public Service (APS), Salt River Project (SRP) and Tucson Electric Power (TEP) have teamed up to create the Utilities’ Grant Program, which will support tribal, state, and local governments as well as nonprofit groups and other stakeholders in applying for grants from federal, state and other sources.

The need for such assistance was identified by listening to the challenges impacted communities face when seeking funding to develop long-term sustainable and strategic economies. The ability to hire grant writers or commission economic impact studies, for example, would significantly bolster the efforts of some communities to successfully compete for federal, state and other grant opportunities.

Applications for up to $25,000 in assistance may be filed on behalf of impacted communities within 50 miles of a coal-fired power plant owned by APS, SRP or TEP. Tribal, state and local governments, public schools, economic development groups and nonprofit groups may be eligible to apply.

More details about submission eligibility and requirements are available here. The first grant application cycle closes May 15. Additional grant cycles will be scheduled later this year.

The Utilities’ Grant Program builds on other successful economic development efforts, including the Arizona Commerce Authority’s approval last year of an Arizona Broadband Development grant of $9.7 million each for Apache and Navajo counties. Those funds will support additional broadband connectivity in communities throughout these counties, including Joseph City — where APS owns and operates the Cholla Power Plant, St. Johns – where SRP owns and operates the Coronado Generating Station (CGS), and Springerville — where TEP operates the Springerville Generating Station (SGS).

As APS, SRP and TEP transition toward cleaner generation resources in the coming years, all three companies continue to work with employees, community members, regulators and other stakeholders to develop a thoughtful, equitable and meaningful transition process that will strengthen local communities and mitigate any community impacts.

“We are committed to supporting the prosperity of the communities we serve and where we operate, which includes exploring ways to boost economic development,” said Ann Becker, APS Vice President of Sustainability. “Providing these communities with the resources they need to compete for economic development or federal and state assistance not only makes sense, but it’s also the right thing to do.”

“These communities are taking meaningful steps to develop the type of growth they want to see,” said Kelly Barr, SRP’s Chief Strategy, Corporate Services and Sustainability Executive. “These grants will empower local communities to continue to develop new strategies and programs that drive forward sustainable, successful futures.”

“Local leaders and residents know best about the unique strengths, assets and needs that all play a role in their ability to accelerate positive change for their communities,” said Erik Bakken, TEP’s Vice President of Energy Resources and Chief Sustainability Officer. “This model builds on our collaborative and shared work to identify solutions that will drive long-term economic health.”

About APS

APS serves more than 1.3 million homes and businesses in 11 of Arizona’s 15 counties, and is a leader in delivering affordable, clean and reliable energy in the Southwest. The company is committed to serving customers with 100% clean power by 2050. As owner and operator of Palo Verde Generating Station, the nation’s largest producer of carbon-free electricity, and with one of the country’s most substantial renewable energy portfolios, APS’s current energy mix is 50% clean. With headquarters in Phoenix, APS is the principal subsidiary of Pinnacle West Capital Corp. (NYSE: PNW). aps.com

About SRP

SRP is a community-based, not-for-profit public power utility and the largest electricity provider in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, serving approximately 1.1 million customers. SRP provides water to about half of the Valley’s residents, delivering more than 244 billion gallons of water (750,000 acre-feet) each year, and manages a 13,000-square-mile watershed that includes an extensive system of reservoirs, wells, canals and irrigation laterals. srpnet.com

About TEP

TEP provides safe, reliable electric service to more than 442,000 customers in Southern Arizona. For more information, visit tep.com. TEP and its parent company, UNS Energy, are subsidiaries of Fortis Inc., which owns utilities that serve more than 3 million customers across Canada and in the United States and the Caribbean. For more information, visit fortisinc.com.

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