Annual funding to the Coal Technology Development Assistance Fund starts with $10 million dollars and to this is added by the Department of Revenue 1/64 of the revenue realized during the preceding month from the taxes imposed by the Electricity Excise Tax Law, the Public Utilities Revenue Act, the Messages Tax Act, and the Gas Revenue Tax
Act. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) with revenue from taxpayers promotes, subsidizes, and markets the private coal industry in Illinois. Renewable energy sources are not the focus in the energy plan of Illinois.
Grants administered by DCEO’s Office of Coal Development to establish coal resources as a fuel for the 21st century. Deputy Director of the Office of Coal Development is Bill Holback, 217-782-6370.
1. Illinois Coal Competitiveness Program. Contact John McCarthy 217-785-1671 In FY 2012, DCEO awarded $9.1 million in state funds for 13 coal production and utilization projects. Since its inception in 1996, the program has
produced more than $2.1 billion in private infrastructure investments in Illinois. Approximately $15 million from the Coal Technology Development Assistance Fund is appropriated annually for the Coal Competitiveness Program.
2. Illinois Coal Demonstration Program. Contact Dan Wheeler 217-558-2645. Since its inception in 1981, IL has provided nearly $191.8 million from the Coal and Energy Development Bond Fund for 40 projects. Grants are typically
between $1 million and $30 million. DCEO is authorized to issue $185 million in IL General Obligation Bond funds to finance selected projects. A project-specific appropriation must be made and projects are subject to final approval by
3. Illinois Coal Research Program. Contact Dan Wheeler 217-558-2645. To date, the Coal Research Program has provided grants totaling more than $71.5 million in state, federal, and private industry funds to more than 15 universities and other research institutions engaged in coal research activities focusing on, carbon management advanced coal mining technologies, power generation and plant efficiencies, coal gasification, flue gas cleaning, and coal chemistry. In FY 2012, DCEO awarded $1.1 million in state funds to conduct 11 research projects. Approximately $3 million from the Coal Technology Development Assistance Fund is made available to the IL Clean Coal Institute (ICCI) for research projects annually.
4. Illinois Coal Development Program. Provides a 50/50 match with private industry dollars. To date, nearly $14.7 million has been awarded to 76 projects.
5. Illinois Coal Revival Program. Contact Dan Wheeler 217-558-2645. This program provides financial assistance in the form of grants to assist with the development of new, coal-fired electric generation capacity or coal gasification facilities in IL. The grant is based on State Retail Occupation Taxes that will be paid on Illinois coal purchases for new facilities. Qualifying facilities may be eligible for grants roughly equal to the present value of future sales taxes paid on Illinois-
mined coal over a 25 year period, up to a maximum amount of $100 million. Source of Funds: The Illinois Resource Development and Energy Security Act (Public Act 92-0012) authorizes DCEO to expend $500 million Coal and Energy
Development Bond Funds to promote the development of new, coal-fired electric generation capacity in Illinois
6. Illinois Coal Education Program. Contact Linda Dunbar 217-558-2648. DCEO’s program “strives to preserve and enhance the marketability of Illinois coal; heighten awareness and understanding of the importance of the coal industry
to the socioeconomic structure of IL; and promote the mining and utilization of coal in IL. Program activities include the development and distribution of comprehensive coal education resource materials for use in Illinois classrooms.”
DCEO also sponsors an art and essay contest and a 4 day workshop for teachers at Rend Lake.
The “coal curriculum” distributed by DCEO is a pro-coal program that does not reveal the environmental and health consequences produced by coal mining and coal use.