Pennsylvania hands out grants for APU purchases

| 10/25/2006

A handful of truckers in Pennsylvania have gotten some help toward the purchase of anti-idling technology.

On Friday, Oct. 20, Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell awarded 39 grants totaling $224,318 to help Pennsylvania small businesses enhance energy efficiency and prevent pollution. Of those, several went to small-business trucking operators.

The grants, awarded under the state’s Small Business Advantage Grant Program, provide a 50-percent match of up to $7,500 for equipment or processes to reduce energy consumption. The program is not limited to the trucking industry, but is applicable to idle-reduction devices, such as auxiliary power units.

“Improving energy efficiency and preventing pollution are vital steps for Pennsylvania businesses and for the environment we all share,” Rendell said in a press release. “By partnering with small businesses to reduce waste and improve their competitiveness, we are keeping our air, land and water cleaner and opening the doors to greater economic opportunities.”

The program was started in July 2004. Since then, more than $2.2 million has been awarded to almost 490 businesses across the state.

According to information from the Department of Environmental Protection’s Web site, the Small Business Advantage Grant Program is open to small business owners whose business or facility is located in Pennsylvania. An eligible applicant must be a for-profit business enterprise that is a corporation, limited liability company, partnership, sole proprietorship or other legal entity that has no more than 100 employees and is a separate legal business entity at the time the application is submitted.

Tony Williams, an OOIDA member from Littlestown, PA, will receive $4,300 through the program. He told Land Line Magazine that he signed up for the program after hearing about it in his local newspaper, and hopes to use it to save costs on fuel.

At that time, fuel was $3 a gallon,” Williams said. “If you can save a lot of money burning fuel through the year, that’s money in your pocket.”

Because of its popularity, the program is no longer accepting applications for the current round of funding. For more information on the program and to get a jump-start on next year’s application process, visit Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s Web site at

– By Aaron Ladage, staff editor