Illinois created the Renewable Energy Resources Trust Fund in 1999 with the goal of driving the development of in-state renewable energy projects. This program has been incredibly well received and interest from home owners and businesses has grown significantly each year. However, much of the funding has been swept in recent years leaving many applicants unable to purchase solar or wind energy systems. While other states are thriving due to lowered installation costs, growth in Illinois pales. If protected, home owners would save on utility bills and we would put electricians, carpenters and plumbers back to work installing local renewable energy.
The Solar Rebate Program is a robust self-funded program providing rebates for residential/commercial and non-profit/government solar and wind energy systems. Capped at $10,000 per application, this cash rebate is awarded on a first-come first-serve basis until the program is out of funds for the fiscal year.
The program is funded through a special fee called the Renewable Energy Resources and Coal Technology Development Assistance Charge and, therefore, does not impact the struggling state budget or other worthy programs. Roughly 5 cents is collected by the utilities each month amounting to nearly $10 million over the course of a year, split equally between Renewable Energy projects and Clean Coal Technology Research. This program is mandated by law until 2015.
For more information on state rebates visit the IL Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity's rebate page.