NWILED helps launch new C-PACE financing program within Mount Carroll

HANOVER – Northwest Illinois Economic Development has announced the creation of a new financing incentive for investors and entrepreneurs doing business within Mount Carroll.

The Illinois Finance Authority commercial property-assessed clean-energy program was established for Mount Carroll on Jan. 24. Its purpose is to make renovating or constructing buildings for a clean-energy economy more affordable for local businesses.

C-PACE programs allow businesses to pay off clean-energy projects on a long-term basis through voluntarily requested special assessments tied to the property. The new C-PACE program comes at no cost to the city, and it may terminate or suspend the program at any time, for any reason or for no reason.

“We welcome the partnership with the Illinois Finance Authority in our community as a way to offer options for existing businesses and attract new development or redevelopment opportunities using environmental initiatives,” Mount Carroll Mayor Carl Bates said.

C-PACE programs aim to spur investment in renewable energy systems and resilient building design. Any privately owned commercial, industrial, nonresidential agricultural or multifamily (of five or more units) property or any property owned by a nonprofit can take advantage of C-PACE programs in connection with the renovations of an existing building and new construction – in each case, up to 25% of the value of the property.

Instead of asking a bank for a traditional loan secured by a mortgage, the C-PACE program enables owners and developers of commercial real estate to secure their long-term financing needs with a better form of collateral, thus making it less risky for lenders and allowing businesses to push off initial costs and pay off projects up to 40 years with fixed interest rates.

Eligible improvements generally include fixtures, systems and equipment. Basically anything that improves energy efficiency, promotes renewable energy and energy resiliency or lowers water use is eligible, including electric vehicle-charging stations. 

Examples of projects include renovating an existing structure into commercial kitchen space, upgrading older hotels and new construction of for-lease commercial workforce housing.

NWILED is eager to see new projects come forward.

“It has been a great pleasure working with the IFA to get this program in place for the city of Mount Carroll,” said Joe Mattingley, NWILED vice chairman. “This is a great tool that can provide long-term, low-cost financing for investment in northwest Illinois for projects that are greater than $1.5 million.”

NWILED helped launch similar C-PACE programs for Galena and Jo Daviess County in 2023.

For information on the IFA and the IFA PACE program, including the program’s one-page application, visit www.il-fa.com.

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