Powering Strong Communities

Texas PUC Adopts New Rule to Provide Grants for New Power Plants, Expansions of Existing Facilities

The Public Utility Commission of Texas on April 25 adopted a new rule to implement the Texas Energy Fund Completion Bonus Grant Program.

The program will provide grants for new dispatchable electric generation facilities or expansions of existing facilities that meet certain planning requirements after June 1, 2023 and interconnect to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas grid before June 1, 2029.

The new rule establishes procedures for applying for a completion bonus grant, terms for annual grant payments, and performance requirements.

To be eligible for a completion bonus grant, a facility or an expansion of an existing facility must add at least 100 MW to the ERCOT grid and meet other requirements specified in the rule.

The amount of a completion bonus grant award is based on the generation capacity added, interconnection date of the facility, and program funding availability.

Award payments will be issued in ten yearly installments, and an eligible facility must meet minimum performance requirements established in the rule to receive a payment each year.

The Completion Bonus Grant Program is one of four Texas Energy Fund (TEF) programs created under the Powering Texas Forward Act, which was established by the Texas Legislature through passage of Senate Bill 2627 in 2023.

The rule establishing the Completion Bonus Grant Program adopted today is the second TEF rule adopted by the Commission; the In-ERCOT Generation Loan Program rule was adopted on March 21. The In-ERCOT Generation Loan Program provides low-interest loans for the construction of new dispatchable electric generating facilities in the ERCOT power region or the expansion of existing facilities providing power to the ERCOT power region.

The other two programs within the TEF provide funding for companies to establish or secure back-up power resources, and funding to improve the resiliency and availability of electric utility service outside the ERCOT region.

The TEF has $5 billion available for all four programs, and additional funding may be provided by the legislature in future years.

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