Illinois Power Agency Updates Equity Investment Eligible Community Map

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As of April 29, 2024, the IPA’s Equity Investment Eligible Community map has been refreshed to include the updated R3 Areas. These R3 Area designations were determined through a process conducted by the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (“ICJIA”) regarding the R3 maps. For this process, ICJIA utilized the new 2020 census and geography information, unemployment indicators, child poverty indicators, and reflected a five-year time span.

Equity Eligible Investment Communities (“EIEC”) are comprised of R3 Areas as established pursuant to Section 10-40 of the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act, where residents have historically been excluded from economic opportunities, including opportunities in the energy sector; and Environmental justice communities, as defined by the Illinois Power Agency pursuant to the Illinois Power Agency Act, where residents have historically been subject to disproportionate burdens of pollution, including pollution from the energy sector.

For Program Year 2024-25, the Equity Investment Eligible Community map, will include both the updated R3 Areas identified through new analysis and previously identified R3 Areas. This update increases the total number of R3 Areas in central and southern Illinois.

Equity Eligible Persons’ status based on residency may be affected by the changes. As stated in Section 10.1.1. of the 2024 Long-Term Plan, the IPA will incorporate the R3 map updates while continuing to consider areas from the previous R3 map as EIECs for the 2024-25 Program Year. The R3 map is expected to be updated every four years. For individuals whose EEP status is affected by the EIEC map update, their status will change at the next recertification – i.e., two years after they first certify for workforce EEPs and at the next registration renewal for EEPs that are majority-owners of EECs. For EECs that may lose the status of EEC due to a majority-owner EEP no longer qualifying as an EEP, any projects already under contract through the EEC Category will not be affected by that loss of status. Similarly, any projects that have received points in project selection due to contracting with an EEC Designee will not be penalized for a downstream change in the EEC status of that designee due to a map update.

The IPA plans for previously eligible areas no longer identified as R3 Areas to be removed from the EIEC map on June 1, 2025.

As announced on September 28, 2023, the IPA updated the EIEC map to reflect the new Solar for All Environmental Justice Community map.

Lastly, as part of the EIEC map refresh, the IPA has updated the EIEC map instructions to improve the user experience. Furthermore, the EIEC map shapefiles are now available to the public. These enhancements reflect the IPA’s ongoing commitment to transparency and accessibility around DEI initiatives. For questions, please contact [email protected].

Thank you!    
Illinois Shines Program    
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