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Montana's First C-PACE Loan Saves Business Costs, Reduces Water Waste

The Montana Department of Commerce and the Montana Facility Finance Authority recently announced the loan closing for Montana's first Commercial Property Assessed Capital Enhancement (C-PACE) project to support Bridger Brewing's Headwaters Utility Association. The water treatment system project will result in $10 million in savings for Bridger Brewing and approximately 300 million gallons in conserved water over the years.  

"The C-PACE program is making energy efficiency upgrades and investments more attainable for Montana commercial building owners," said Montana Department of Commerce Director Scott Osterman. "We are very pleased to see Montana's C-PACE program and Bridger Brewing work together to create this project, which will save on business operations expenses and conserve millions of gallons of water."

The Headwaters Utility Association was created by Bridger Brewing to service the intersection of I-90 and Highway 287 in Broadwater County. The water treatment system project will allow development of commercial and multifamily properties in the area.

Apart from being the first C-PACE project in Montana, this marks the first time that C-PACE has been used to finance a water and sewer district anywhere in the country. 

C-PACE financing for the project will occur in two phases. The first phase closed May 19th for $1.75 million; a second phase is expected to follow in June, bringing total financing for the project through C-PACE to over $5 million. 

"We are very proud, but not surprised, that Montana is paving the way for innovation nationally," said Montana Facility Finance Authority's Executive Director Adam Gill. "Montana has always been on the forefront of innovation, be it through economic development or conservation.  With great partners like Dividend Finance, the Montana Business Assistance Connection, Citizen's Alliance Bank, and Bridger Brewing, we're seeing these changes first-hand."

The C-PACE lender is Dividend Finance of San Diego, working in cooperation with primary lender Citizen's Alliance Bank in Great Falls. The financing package was arranged with the support of Helena's Montana Business Assistance Connection. The new Utility Association will pay the C-PACE loan back through a special assessment on the property taxes of the property served by the District. State and local governments are not responsible for payback.

C-PACE is a new financing tool which can help Montana businesses save money through energy efficiency upgrades, renewable energy investment, or water conservation. Businesses within a C-PACE district can apply for and receive energy efficiency upgrades on their buildings at preferable rates and terms with the added advantage of savings on energy costs. To learn more about C-PACE financing, visit LastBestPACE.COM.

The Montana C-PACE program is administered by the Montana Facility Finance Authority (MFFA) which is administratively attached to the Department of Commerce.

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