Washington, DC – Today Congresswoman Cheri Bustos announced Illinois will be receiving nearly $12 million in United States Department of Agriculture funding from the Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership (BIP) program. Nationally, these funds will be used to nearly double the number of fueling pumps that supply renewable fuels to American motorists.
This announcement comes after months of behind the scenes work by Rep. Bustos to secure these funds to strengthen Illinois’ agricultural economy.
“I’m proud to help deliver these funds to strengthen Illinois’ agricultural economy by investing in biofuel infrastructure,” said Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. “To break our nation’s addiction to foreign fossil fuels, we need to invest in American energy sources and that’s exactly what this program will do.”
When the BIP program was announced by the USDA in June, Bustos sent a letter to Governor Bruce Rauner, urging him to participate in the program. She later led a bipartisan coalition of Illinois delegation members in a letter of support for Illinois’ application for funding through this program. Then in September, Bustos announced that Illinois had been selected as one of the states set to receive BIP funding. Today it was announced that the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity will be receiving $11,979,912.
Through BIP, USDA is awarding competitive grants, matched by states, to expand the infrastructure for distribution of higher blends of ethanol. BIP funds from the Commodity Credit Corporation must be used to pay a portion of the costs related to the installation of fuel pumps and related infrastructure dedicated to the distribution of higher ethanol blends, for example E15 and E85, at vehicle fueling locations. The matching contributions may be used for these items or for related costs such as additional infrastructure to support pumps, marketing, education, data collection, program evaluation and administrative costs. This partnership will expand markets for farmers, support rural economic growth and the jobs that come with it, and ultimately give consumers more choices at the pump.