First Wind Obtains Financing For Rollins Wind Project

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First Wind has obtained $98 million in financing for its 60 MW Rollins wind project in Penobscot County, Maine. The company closed an $81 million nonrecourse construction loan and a $17 million letter of credit facility for the project.

Key Bank National Association and Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale served as the joint lead arrangers for the financing. In addition to the financing, JPM Capital Corp. has executed a tax-equity financing agreement with a subsidiary of First Wind. When the project goes into commercial operation, JPM Capital will provide long-term capital to take out the construction loan.

During construction, the Rollins project is expected to create about 200 jobs and provide revenue to the surrounding communities. Four local communities near the project (Lincoln, Lee, Burlington and Winn) are slated to receive, on average, an estimated combined tax payment of $785,000 a year for the next 30 years – more than $24 million in total, according to First Wind.

Maine-based contractor Reed & Reed began construction on the project in September and is hiring mostly Maine-based businesses and subcontractors to work on the project. The project is expected to be online and operating sometime in fall 2011.

First Wind's Rollins project received approval from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection in April 2009. The Maine Public Utilities Commission unanimously approved a 20-year long-term contract to supply the renewable energy generated from the project to Maine consumers.

SOURCE: First Wind

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