The Federal Government’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 has allotted over $37 million for Hawaii’s energy-related programs. The Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism’s strategy for the use of Recovery Act funds is in-line with the state’s energy priorities as follows:
- Jobs will be created or retained and economic development promoted by helping to accelerate the development of projects by providing funds to tip (start) projects currently stalled or in the pipeline for implementation. Job growth will also be facilitated by expanding the capacity of government to assist organizations in addressing broad economic recovery issues, including helping low-income individuals secure and retain employment, earn higher wages, obtain better-quality jobs, and gain greater access to state and federal benefits and tax credits.
- Stabilizing the state’s fiscal situation has prompted DBEDT to refocus on its core functions and to use Recovery funds to counter-balance the local and national economic downturn leading to the downsizing of businesses, loss of jobs, reduction in staffs, resource constraints, and increasing economic risk.
- The expenditure of ARRA funds has focused on wisely using these resources to target strategic market interventions that can cause permanent structural change; to identify opportunities for better integration of initiatives for technology deployment and market transformation; and to promote collaboration across public and private agencies.
- ARRA funds are transforming Hawaii’s energy infrastructure with state-of-the-art clean energy technology, which improves Hawaii’s economic competitiveness by necessitating the development of a supporting skilled workforce.