The owner of Auglaize Auto Body in Wapakoneta, Ohio says he stumbled across a grant being offered by the Ohio Air Quality Development Authority (OAQDA). The grant was for $70K but what caught our eye was that it was approved to purchase one of our Accudraft Semi-Downdraft Paint Booths. That got us thinking, are there grants for body shops in other areas of the country and where should body shops look? Here is what we found.
Simply put, many of the standards required by grantors offering thousands of dollars to purchase a new paint booth are the same ones that help paint booth operators do a better job. Auglaize, currently known as Vintage Metal Werks wanted to invest in the type of equipment that would help improve “productivity, efficiency, and safety.”
The Clean Air Resource Center or CARC provided the funds which were approved by OAQDA in their quest to help clean up the air in Ohio. This type of investment is frequently approved for small businesses where certain upgrades will help control pollution and greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollutants.
Auglaize chose an Accudraft paint booth because of the efficiencies it provides. Body shop owner Joe Patterson cited the high heat generation at 30% less energy use, plus the advanced technology used to recycle clean air inside and outside of these paint booths. In addition to the Accudraft Semi-Downdraft Paint Booth, the company purchased a prep station for additional pollution elimination.
Practically every state in the country has a similar organization like Ohio’s OAQDA. No matter the locality, getting approved for one of these competitive grants will require making a strong argument. Auglaize’s owners had to petition their case in front of the grant board by citing the energy efficiencies gained through the investment in a new Accudraft paint booth.
Different areas are going to have grants that emphasize different solutions to energy shortages and air pollution. The Clean Air Resource Center that is funding the $70K grant awards grant money based on:
The size of the business – this is specifically a small business grant.
Assists with clean air compliance – CARC makes it a point to note that it is an independent organization and not a part of the EPA of Ohio. Its sole goal is to help small businesses comply with Ohio’s EPA standards.
Finances the cost of equipment installation – there are many different industries that fit this category, as long as the equipment purchase will help to control and or prevent pollution.
Pays initial costs of investment – in addition to providing a tax break for an investment in a new paint booth, CARC pays up to 30% of the upfront costs for the purchase of a new paint booth.
We searched the most recent data from the EPA and DSIRE® to look specifically for grants that are available to paint booth operators. Keep in mind that most of these grant periods expired last year or earlier this year, meaning they are still waiting for new funding.
Some of these grants may or may not be funded this year, but they are worth checking back for to see if an open grant period has started. Also, remember that Auglaize just happened to stumble across a grant for the Ohio Air Quality Authority? There are agricultural grants for small businesses in rural areas but it doesn’t necessarily have to be a farm or farm-related business.
Here is a breakdown of available grant programs for paint booth operators nationally and by state. Check this link or search the grant name to be alerted when new funding is available for expired grants.