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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Ivey announces $500k grant for weatherization training center at Bevill State

MONTGOMERY – Gov. Kay Ivey has announced a $500,000 grant to renovate space at Bevill State Community College in Walker County for a new weatherization training center.

The funds from the Appalachian Regional Commission will be used to create the Energy Infrastructure Center at the college, which will provide training on making homes more energy efficient. Bevill State has partnered with the Alabama Community College System and Alabama Power to create and implement a training plan for the center as part of Alabama’s Weatherization Assistance Program. The program’s mission is to lower energy costs for low-income households by making improvements to their homes.

“This project is great news for Bevill State and for all Alabama residents who benefit from the Weatherization Assistance Program as well as the construction professionals who make the improvements,” Gov. Kay Ivey said. “I am pleased to announce this grant and excited to see the positive effects of this state-of-the-art training facility.”

Bevill State, the Community College System and Alabama Power will coordinate training on emerging technologies in home weatherization. Once complete, the Energy Infrastructure Center will be the statewide hub for weatherization training. Bevill State will provide an additional $678,500 to complete the funding required for the project.

Dr. Joel Hagood, President of Bevill State Community College, commented, “The Alabama Energy Infrastructure Training Center and Network, including the Weatherization training, will provide critical training and skills development for our students, addressing the growing workforce needs across the state of Alabama. By focusing on cutting-edge technologies in energy efficiency, we are equipping our students with the expertise required to meet current and future industry demands, thereby contributing to the economic well-being of our community and Alabama.”

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs administers the ARC and Weatherization Assistance programs in Alabama.

“This project is an example of the power of strong partnerships,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “ADECA joins Gov. Ivey in applauding all those involved in planning and securing funds for this training center, which will provide the training needed to help the Weatherization Assistance Program continue to assist low-income households in the years to come.”

Gov. Ivey notified Bevill State President Joel Hagood that the grant had been approved.

ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments. The agency’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation. Thirty-seven Alabama counties, including Walker County, are part of the ARC region and eligible for funds.

ADECA manages a range of programs that support law enforcement, economic development, recreation, energy conservation and water resource management.

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