CHICAGO — Today, Governor JB Pritzker announced that Illinois secured 14.9M in competitive federal grant funding from the US Department of Transportation’s FY22-FY23 Charging and Fueling Infrastructure (CFI) Discretionary Grant Program. The Illinois Finance Authority (IFA), in its role as the Illinois Climate Bank, was chosen to receive the $14.9M to support the expansion of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure in Illinois.

“As Illinois moves toward a clean energy future, it is imperative that no communities are left behind,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “This investment from our partners at the federal level will ensure Illinois has the resources to make electric vehicles accessible to all our residents. With the incredible work from the Illinois Finance Authority, regional partners, and local leadership, I have no doubt the Community Charging Program will make a positive impact statewide.”

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The proposed project, “The State of Illinois Community Charging Program,” aims to advance community-based transportation efforts across Illinois and prioritize equity in the clean energy movement. The statewide initiative is a joint effort between the Illinois Climate Bank as well as local and regional partners, serving 273 project sites (144 of which are located in or in close proximity to disadvantaged communities). The funds will support construction of 845 Level 2 EV Charging stations, and 36 DC Fast Charge stations.

Of the total $18.7M project investment,

  • 43% will be allocated for disadvantaged community projects.
  • 63% will be designated to dense urban communities with a high percentage of multi-family housing, as well as rural communities and small towns.

The new funding for EV charging infrastructure bolsters the State of Illinois’ previous efforts towards a clean energy future. Considerable progress under the Pritzker Administration includes the 2021 signing of the Climate & Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA), which places the state on a path to 100% clean energy by 2045 and 1 million electric vehicles on the roads by 2030.

Additionally, in the past year alone, the Pritzker Administration launched $10M in funding for the Climate Works Pre-Apprenticeship Program, allocated $6M for the Energy Transition Barrier Reduction Program, and partnered with numerous EV manufacturers to open Illinois factory sites and ensure career pathways in EV production.

“Governor Pritzker’s nation-leading CEJA legislation was the competitive advantage for this CFI award,” said Chris Meister, Executive Director of Illinois Finance Authority/Climate Bank. “CEJA prioritizes (1) measurable progress on climate; (2) authentic community voices through Justice40; and (3) partnerships across regions and organizations. In awarding CFI to Illinois, the United States Department of Transportation has demonstrated that the federal government is aligned with Illinois goals under CEJA.”

“By expanding access to electric vehicle chargers, we are weaving a network that connects urban and rural areas alike, ensuring that every community, regardless of its geographical or socioeconomic standing, has the tools to embrace the electric vehicle revolution,” said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL). “This investment is a key step in breaking down barriers to entry for disadvantaged communities, offering them a ticket to the future of transportation.”

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“Expanding access to reliable charging stations for electric vehicles that help lower fuel costs and reduce emissions across our state is a crucial infrastructure investment,” said U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL). “I’m glad that this funding will prioritize equity by helping make EV charging sites more accessible to all Illinoisans—no matter if they live in an urban area or a rural community.”

“As climate change worsens, the need to transition away from gas guzzling vehicles has never been more pressing. With today’s announcement, we are addressing the issue head-on with equity in mind. Convenient charging stations have long been scarce – especially to underserved communities,” said U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (D-IL). “This funding prioritizes those communities, ensuring charging ability is not dependent on socio-economic status. I am proud to have played a part in bringing this funding back to communities in Illinois and look forward to seeing the positive impact it will have across our state.”

“It has been my great pleasure to work with Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Finance Authority to support the state of Illinois Community Charging Program,” said U.S. Representative Danny K. Davis (D-IL). “I supported the federal funding for this program that will accelerate electrification with a focus on equitable access so that communities like mine can benefit from clean energy. I am proud that the State is receiving a nearly $15 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Congratulations, Mr. Governor, and congratulations to the citizens of Illinois.”

“I am thrilled to see that the Illinois Finance Authority has been awarded $15 million to build out a statewide network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers,” said U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL). “Transportation is the single largest source of carbon emissions in the United States, and ensuring equitable and widespread access to EV chargers is a key step in electrifying this sector. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the delegation and across Illinois on implementation of this critical program.”

“I’m proud that Illinois will receive this substantial award to help our state build out electric vehicle charging infrastructure in urban and rural areas,” said U.S. Representative Bill Foster (D-IL). “As more electric vehicles hit the roads, it’s vital that we have an efficient charging infrastructure to support them. Illinois continues to lead the way in the clean energy economy that will benefit our entire state.”

“The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is making it easier than ever for more families to own and drive electric vehicles,” said U.S. Representative Lauren Underwood (D-IL). “These investments are critical to our fight against climate change, and for creating better public health outcomes for our communities, and I am so proud of our work to bring this federal funding home.”

“This is very exciting news for Illinois’ efforts to create jobs and advance our electric vehicle and clean energy goals,” said U.S. Representative Jesús “Chuy” García (D-IL). “Clean transportation plays an important role in a greener, healthier future, and I will continue to advocate alongside federal and state partners to fund these priorities.”

“Building sustainable communities means investing in a clean energy future,” said U.S. Representative Eric Sorenson (D-IL). “As more Americans switch to using electric cars and vehicles, we need to make sure we have the charging infrastructure in place to support this growth, meaning we can create more good-paying jobs in the process. This critical funding will help make the decision to go electric more accessible for middle-class families across Illinois.”

“I am thrilled to welcome nearly $15M from the USDOT CFI Community program to Illinois to address pressing need for accessible EV charging infrastructure,” said U.S. Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL). “This initiative represents the Biden-Harris Administration’s steadfast dedication to ensuring that the benefits of our electrification efforts reach every corner of Illinois. This partnership exemplifies our state's ambitious climate goals while fostering cooperation and coordination among local and regional partners. Today, we can celebrate this step towards a cleaner, more sustainable future for Illinois.”

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