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Centralia Coal Transition Board Supports Pre-employment Training Services for Youth in Lewis County

Centralia, Wash. The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Economic & Community Development Board is pleased to announce it has approved a grant award in the amount of $7,700.00 to the Morningside organization. The grant will be used to support the Lewis County Pre-employment Training Services program which offers youth ages 14-21 who utilize Individual Education Plans or 504 Plan services to complete work readiness activities, work-based learning activities, as well as paid internships.   

The Pre-employment Training Services is a new program that began in January 2021. In partnership with school districts and the Washington State Division of Vocational Rehabilitation the program is designed to help students with disabilities that are not being served by other programs. The program currently serves high school students in Pe Ell, Onalaska, Morton, Randle, Napavine, Chehalis and Centralia and is designed to accommodate each individual students’ needs and abilities and to progress at their own speed based on their interests.

Morningside’s mission is to provide the training, coaching, and employment services that build the self-sufficiency and self-esteem of people with disabilities; to transform lives for people with disabilities by removing significant barriers to employment and providing an infrastructure of personalized support. Since 1963, Morningside has been helping change the lives of individuals with significant disabilities by matching their skill and interest in jobs in the community. They now operate in six counties in Western Washington (Thurston, Mason, Clallam, Grays Harbor, Lewis, and Pierce.)

The Economic & Community Development Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia Plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit retiring at the end of 2020 and the second unit at the end of 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:
Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. 
Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

 Centralia Coal Transition Weatherization Board  

 supports energy efficiency upgrades for St. Joseph School  

Centralia, Wash. The Centralia Coal Transition Weatherization Board approved a grant award in the amount of $100,000 to support weatherization and energy efficiency improvements for St. Joseph School. The project is funded to support the school’s efforts to improve HVAC efficiency by replacing an outdated gas boiler and windows throughout the building. The installation of ductless units will allow for more flexibility and efficient control of the heating/cooling use and lower energy needs overall.

St. Joseph School was built in 1923 and many of the weatherization components of the building are showing their age. Replacement of outdated lighting with LED fixtures was the first step in making building improvements. The upgrades for the HVAC and windows will be their next step to improve the operation of the facility and the safety and comfort for students and staff.

The Weatherization Board was formed as part of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit retiring in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Centralia Coal Transition Board Supports

Solar installation at the Palouse High School

Centralia, Wash. On April 17, 2023, the Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board entered into a Grant Agreement with the Palouse School District to support the installation of a 100kW roof mounted solar system at Palouse High School. The grant award of $150,000 is leveraged with additional funding from the Washington Department of Commerce Solar Grant program. The solar project will reduce the Palouse School District’s usage at the high school by 54.7% allowing the savings from the electric bill to be redirected to fund capital improvement projects.

The Palouse School District has an ongoing commitment and goal to upgrade facilities and technology to best serve the staff and students. It is the district’s goal to continue finding ways to reduce operating expenses and by finding ways to implement sustainable energy sources where it financially makes sense. The proposed solar project aligns with these goals.

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

Centralia Coal Transition Board Supports

Clean Transportation for the Skamania School District

Centralia, Wash. On April 17, 2023, the Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board entered into a Grant Agreement with the Skamania School District to support their efforts to scrap and replace a diesel bus with an all-new EV School Bus. The grant award of $100,000 will be leveraged with additional funding efforts by the district and aligns with their goal to reduce air toxics and greenhouse gas emissions, providing cleaner air to their community.

Skamania School District is in southwest Washington and serves as a school for students from Head Start to 8th grade. Their mission, to provide opportunities which prepare students to become responsible decision makers, lifelong learners, and caring, contributing members of society.

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

Centralia Coal Transition Board supports Solar installation for the City of Medical Lake

Centralia, Wash. (July 12, 2023) On April 17, 2023, the Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board entered into a Grant Agreement with the City of Medical Lake to support the installation of a 100kW ground mounted solar system at the Wastewater Treatment Plant owned by the City of Medical Lake. The grant award of $185,000 will be leveraged with additional funding from the Washington Department of Commerce Solar Grant program. The solar project will produce electrical energy allowing for a reduction in electrical charges by approximately 10.8%. This savings will reduce the City’s overall electric bill and allow the city to redirect the savings to capital improvement projects and the needs of the citizens.  

The waster reclaimed by the Wastewater Treatment Plan that this solar project will partially power goes toward maintaining the grounds of the Eastern State Hospital Campus, Lakeland Village Campus, the Washington State Veteran’s Cemetery, and local ball fields used by youth sports programs.

The City of Medical Lake is a small city in the growing west plains community of Eastern Washington in southeast Washington. Incorporated in 1890, the city has an ongoing commitment and goal to upgrade facilities and technology to best serve the community and reduce operating expenses by finding ways to implement sustainable energy sources.

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.