The Hill Country isn’t just our service area; it’s our community. That’s why we work to strengthen it by awarding community grants twice each year to qualifying nonprofit organizations.
Grants are awarded through a competitive application process with funds made up of members’ contributions through the Power of Change program and the cooperative’s support.
How to Apply
Applications are currently closed, but will open again in spring with an April deadline. All application materials, including an IRS determination letter, must be included for consideration. If the deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, it is extended to the next regular business day.
There are two funding cycles each year, with application deadlines in April and October.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is my organization eligible?
An organization must have a nonprofit status (either 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) to be eligible to apply. Additional requirements are outlined in the Community Grants eligibility requirements.
Please note: If your organization previously received funding through the Community Grants program, you must sit out for one application cycle before submitting an application for a new project.
What kinds of projects qualify?
Capital improvements and technology and equipment related to energy efficiency qualify for the program. More information is available in the Community Grants eligibility requirements.
What is considered a capital improvement?
Capital improvements consist of additions or changes to a property that increase its value or useful life, or adapt it for a new use. That may include substantial repairs to building infrastructure and systems, or components beyond those addressed through normal operations and maintenance (for example: improvements to lighting, HVAC systems or solar installations). They may include renovations necessary to bring a facility up to current building codes, standards or technologies, or projects that improve functionality, energy efficiency or space utilization. Capital improvements may also address modifications necessary due to changes of use or new business requirements.
PEC reviews each community grant application for these components.
What are some examples of equipment related to energy efficiency?
In addition to energy management systems, common components include energy efficient windows, appliances, lighting and HVAC systems, as well as upgraded insulation. For quick, no or low-cost conservation tips, visit our Energy-saving Tips.
Does my organization’s Texas Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certification issued by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts office meet the Community Grant application’s IRS determination letter requirement?
No, you must provide the determination letter issued by the IRS in order to be considered for our Community Grants program.
What should be included in the project budget?
Documentation of costs (bids/quotes) and funding sources (private, local, federal, state or municipal/county funding) should be submitted as part of the project budget.
How much are the grants?
Up to $5,000 will be awarded to eligible nonprofit organizations for qualified projects located within, or in a community surrounded by our service area.
Where does the funding come from?
Our Community Grants program is funded through members’ voluntary contributions to the Power of Change program with the cooperative’s support. Learn more about our Power of Change program.
How will grant recipients be selected?
Once an application is received, our staff will ensure both the organization and the proposed project are eligible, and the application will be scored based on the evaluation factors listed in the Community Grants eligibility requirements. A separate five-person committee of our employees will then review the scoring to ensure it is consistent. The highest scoring applications will be funded.
Recipients will be notified and receive letter agreements to sign and return to us, certifying that they will use the awarded funds in accordance with the projects described in their respective applications.
If you have questions not found above regarding our Community Grants program, email [email protected].