Bizzarro, Harkins, Merski: More than $65,000 in matching grants to help Erie County businesses grow greener

HARRISBURG, May 8 – State matching grants totaling $65,335 will help 12 small businesses in Erie adopt greener practices, according to state Reps. Ryan Bizzarro, Pat Harkins, and Bob Merski, all D-Erie.

The funding is provided by the state Department of Environmental Protection’s Small Business Advantage Grant program.

“I’m extremely pleased that we were able to help these seven small businesses in our district procure funding,” Harkins said. “Taking steps to be more responsible stewards of the environment helps recover natural resources and also makes economic sense for businesses, because energy-efficient practices are more cost-efficient in the long run.”

Merski agreed, noting, “Greener practices translate to less waste, a healthier work environment, and greater efficiency for these companies, which helps their bottom line. It’s an investment that pays off for everyone.”

Bizzarro added that businesses that work to protect the environment set a good example for others.

“Small businesses can be a positive force for change by inspiring other companies and private citizens,” Bizzarro said. “By ‘going green,’ small-business owners encourage others in the community to do the same. It sends a great message.”

The grant recipients, projects and amounts, by legislative district, are as follows:

First Legislative District:
Two Penny Corporation – HVAC – $7,000
Huffman Family Chiropractic LLC – medical X-ray equipment – $5,000
World Gutter Systems Inc. – lighting -- $7,000
Techworx LLC – lighting – $7,000
Moxie Ate LP dba Lovell Place – lighting – $6,700
Tech Tank LLC – lighting – $4,030
Claudine Thiem dba Claudine’s Consignment LLC – lighting –$3,513

Second Legislative District:
GCW LLC dba Niagara Car Wash – lighting – $7,000
Michael J. Grab dba Michael Grab AIA Architect – lighting – $2,012
Voodoo Brewing Company Inc. – large circulating fans – $2,080

Third Legislative District:
Machining Concepts Inc. – oil skimmer/separator – $7,000
Transportation Investment Group LP – lighting – $7,000

The Small Business Advantage Grant Program provides 50 percent matching grants, up to a maximum of $9,500, to enable Pennsylvania small businesses to adopt or acquire energy-efficient or pollution-prevention equipment or processes.

Since 2004, more than 2,500 Pennsylvania small businesses have benefited from the Small Business Advantage Grant by upgrading lighting, installing efficient HVAC systems, or investing in equipment designed to eliminate waste or pollution from their operations.

The grants are available for businesses with 100 or fewer full-time employees. More information is available through the Small Business Advantage Grant website.