The Metropolitan Mayors Caucus  is a membership organization of the Chicago region’s 275 cities, towns and villages. Founded in 1997 by then Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley and leading Mayors from nine suburban municipal groups, the Mayors Caucus pushes past geographical boundaries and local interests to work on public policy issues. The Caucus provides a forum for metropolitan Chicago’s chief elected officials to collaborate on common problems and work toward a common goal of improving the quality of life for the millions of people who call the region home. 

The Metropolitan Mayo rs Caucus is assembling community EV charging infrastructure projects for an aggregate resubmission for USDOT’s Charging and Fueling Infrastructure (CFI) Community Grant Program.   The Caucus submitted an unsuccessful aggregated application in 2023 and is aiming for a more competitive application in August 2024.

Grants ranging from $500,000 to $15,000,000 will be awarded to strategically deploy electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure and other alternative fueling infrastructure projects in urban and rural communities in publicly accessible locations, including downtown areas and local neighborhoods, particularly in underserved and disadvantaged communities.

Units of local governments as well as special purpose districts and MPO’s (or groups of these organizations like COGs) are eligible. Grants are reimbursable and may pay for 80% of project costs. Funds must be expended by 2030. 

To maximize the federal investment our region, reduce administrative burden of applying individually, and to include projects that wouldn’t meet the $500,000 minimum threshold on their own, we are soliciting requests to be included in an aggregated grant request. This is not meant to be competitive to organizations that wish to apply on their own but is offered as a service to MMC member communities. 

Communities that are currently participating in EV Readiness or have applied to be in EV Readiness Program will be prioritized. Additional Greenest Region Compact Communities will also be included in the application as possible.

To assemble an aggregated application, we seek information about your community and your proposed project in this form by August 1, 2024. 

The Metropolitan Mayors Caucus EV Readiness Program will support municipalities as they take actions to advance transportation electrification. To join the third cohort, please complete this form by Friday, Aug. 16th. The third cohort will begin work in late September and conclude in the spring of 2025. 


If you'd like to find out more about the program before applying, attend our info session on Monday, July 29th, from 11 a.m. to noon. Please register for the virtual session at: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMrcOiprDgiGNWiamOqqfTY3NGBfVi5z8aE


For more information on the Caucus' EV Readiness Program, go to: https://mayorscaucus.org/initiatives/environment/becoming-ev-ready/

The Caucus will be loaning out two different energy efficiency games for municipalities’ upcoming events. There are four energy efficiency challenge wheels available for municipalities to borrow for Earth Day and other events. There are two energy efficiency toss games. For details and pictures of these games, go to: https://mayorscaucus.org/energy-efficiency-games/

**Because the grant funding for this project ended on June 30, 2023, we do not have the funds to ship the games. If you would like to borrow a game after June 30th, then you will need to pick it up from one of our game locations or from the municipality that last borrowed the game for an event, and then drop it off to us or the next municipality that is having an event. Another option is to provide us with your UPS or FedEx account number, if you would like to pay for the games and the few remaining prizes to be shipped to you.**

These games will be loaned out on a first-come, first-served basis. Please complete this form if you have an upcoming event and would like to ensure that your community can borrow it on that day.

These games and prizes for municipalities were made possible through the generous support of the Illinois Science & Energy Innovation Foundation (ISEIF). 

To express interest in participating in the Community Solar Clearinghouse Solution (CS2) Program for Residents, then please fill out this form. Filling out this form is the first step in the process. Once completed, please schedule a brief consultation with Mark Pruitt of the Power Bureau at markjpruitt@thepowerbureau.com or 219-921-3828. 

This site will also allow you to upload documents later in the process, like the approved municipal resolution, utility bill for mailing list cost reimbursement, and required marketing designation documentation. 

For information on the next steps of the process, go to our CS2 webpage at https://mayorscaucus.org/initiatives/environment/community-solar-clearinghouse-solution-program-cs2program/. 

Recognizing the power holidays can have on a community, ComEd has partnered with the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus to launch the fourth year of the ComEd Powering the Holidays Program. This program awards grants of up to $2,500 throughout ComEd’s service territory for community-based holiday lights events.
 

Applications will be accepted from July 8th – August 23rd. To apply, simply create an account and follow the instructions provided alongside your application.


Key Dates
 Application Opens: July 8th, 2024, 7:00 a.m. Central Time
 Application Deadline: August 23rd, 2024, 11:59 p.m. Central Time
 The grant can be used for any holiday lights event from November 1, 2024 – February 13, 2025.

Goals
 The ComEd Powering the Holidays Program aims to:
 (1) celebrate community identity and culture;
 (2) provide an opportunity for intercultural exchange and understanding;
 (3) foster respect and open-mindedness for different cultures;
 (4) develop an appreciation, understanding and respect for what is important to neighbors and others in their community;
 (5) and provide a pathway for people to gain a sense of belonging to their community.


Eligibility
Powering the Holidays will provide grants of up to $2,500 for community-based holiday lights events. Grant recipients must use their funds for any holiday between November 1, 2024 – February 13, 2025.

Municipalities, townships, counties, and other local governments located within ComEd’s service territory (see map) in the following counties: Boone, Bureau, Carroll, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Ford, Grundy, Henry, Iroquois, Jo Daviess, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, LaSalle, Lee, Livingston, Marshall, McHenry, Ogle, Rock Island, Stephenson, Whiteside, Will, Winnebago and Woodford.

2022 and 2023 Powering the Holidays grant recipients are ineligible.

Not-for-profit organizations and cultural institutions are eligible to apply if they partner with at least one municipality. Not-for-profit organizations and cultural institution applications must demonstrate municipal support to be considered for funding.

All events must adhere to federal, state, and local policies. All events must be deemed safe by authorities.

All events must provide an opportunity for attendance by the general public. Events can be private and have attendance caps, but the general public must be able to attend an event or community-based holiday configuration for free on occasion.

Sustainability and efficiency are key values to ComEd and the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus; therefore, applicants must demonstrate a reuse case for the holiday event and materials purchased with grant assistance. The grant cannot be used as a “one-off” occasion.

Applicants must match at least 20% for the event. Please contact Ben Schnelle (bschnelle@mayorscaucus.org) if your community is facing financial hardship and is unable to provide the 20% match. We reserve the right to waive this match on a case-by-case basis.

Applicants must be in good standing with ComEd related to provision of utilities.


Grant Conditions
Grants will be for the amounts of up to $2,500. Grant recipients must use funds for any holiday between November 1, 2024 – February 13, 2025.

During the grant period, award recipients will agree to participate in media or press interactions.

All events must follow all federal, state, and local policies to ensure the safety and health of attendees.

Successful applicants will be notified of a grant award and will enter into a grant agreement with the Metropolitan Mayor Caucus.

Reimbursement payments will be made promptly by the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus upon completion of the final report. Final reports can be submitted by March 1, 2025 or earlier. Failure to submit a final grant report with all the required attachments by the posted deadline may prohibit applicants from participating in any future grant cycles.

The administrator of the Powering the Holidays program is the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus. 

Decisions on grant awards will be announced by the end of October 2024. All communication regarding your application, including the grant decision, will be directed to the contact person listed on your application.

Partial funding is possible for your project.

Support letters are strongly encouraged for your application to demonstrate community support.


Application Components
 1. Enter a Title for your project
 2. Upload a cover letter signed by the Mayor/Village President or Village/City Manager. Non-profits and cultural institutions must submit a cover letter by their Chief Executive along with municipal letter(s) of support.
 3. Provide applicant organization name and point of contact information. The point of contact will be contacted regarding the grant decision.
 4. Submit a project description (700 word limit).
 5. Grant funds requested amount.
 6. Proposed Match: Needs to be at least 20% of grant request.
 7. Work Plan Narrative: Please outline and detail the steps your community will take to implement your event.
 8. Outcomes and leveraged benefits
 9. Provide a needs statement.
 10. Ensure safety of all attendees/participants.
 11. Upload support letters.
 12. Provide additional comments.


Contact
 Ben Schnelle, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, bschnelle@mayorscaucus.org 

Metropolitan Mayors Caucus