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Iowa Energy Center Board Minutes - November 17, 2022

State of Iowa
Energy Center Board
Meeting Minutes of November 17, 2022
at IEDA, 1963 Bell Avenue, Suite 200
Helmick Conference Room
Des Moines, Iowa
Or Via Teams Webinar

Call to order 1:01 p.m.

Board Members Present
Troy DeJoode, Board Chair*
Stuart Anderson*
Jennifer Johnson*
Kelcey Brown*
Scott Stokes*
Terry Kouba*
Matt Washburn*
Dan Nickey*
Craig Just**

Board Members Absent
Debi Durham
Geri Huser

Iowa Economic Development Authority Staff Present
Brian Selinger
Amber Buckingham
Stephanie Weisenbach*
Lisa Connell
Kanan Kappelman
Deanna Triplett
Betty Hessing
Vicky Clinkscales
Terry Roberson*
Staci Hupp-Ballard*

Iowa Finance Authority Staff Present
Michael Thibodeau, Iowa Finance Authority*
Dave Powell, Iowa Finance Authority*
Samantha Askland, Iowa Finance Authority*
Tim Morlan, Iowa Finance Authority*

Others Present
Brenda Biddle, Iowa Utilities Board*
Alison Ver Schuer, Iowa House Democratic Caucus*
Emma Colman, Guest*
Elston Tortuga, Iowa Interfaith Power & Light*
Jessica Flannery, State of Iowa Legislature, House Democrats*
Karin Stein, Moms Clean Air Force*
Li Zhao, China Iowa Group*
*Participated via Teams
**Joined after roll call was taken

Welcome & Introductions by Board Chair Troy DeJoode
Troy DeJoode welcomed everyone to the November 17th IEC Board meeting.

Roll Call
Betty Hessing did roll call and a quorum was established.

Consideration of August 11, 2022 IEC Board Meeting Minutes
Motion by Stuart Anderson
Motion I move approval of the August 11, 2022 minutes as
Second Dan Nickey
Voice Vote All ayes in favor. Motion approved.

Fiscal Update – Attachment A
Terry Roberson explained that three reports are in the packet. First, on the Iowa Energy Center’s Grant Program account—that balance reflects the awards made at the last meeting and is just over a million dollars. Second, on the Energy Infrastructure Loan Program, there have been two awards  made, which have both been paid. Obviously, ample funding available there for any new applications that might come in. Third, on the old Loan Program, which is mostly made-up of loans inherited in the transition of the Iowa Energy Center, receivables are down to $1.6M and sometime before the end of this calendar year, Terry Roberson will move approximately $970,000 from the old Loan Program into the new Loan Program, as per legislation.

Terry Roberson stated he would be happy to answer any questions, but no questions were asked.

Competitive Grant Program Update – Amber Buckingham
Amber Buckingham reported that she spent the months of October and November doing on-site monitoring visits with our grantees. She has completed about 75% of them and will finish them in December. Thus far we have travelled to Iowa State University and did all of those in a week; the University of Iowa and most of the private industry recipients. Those visits have resulted in a few
no-cost extension requests and a couple budget modifications. Once all of those visits are complete, Amber Buckingham will create an Annual Report based on her findings and we will review those at the February Board meeting. For the next round of grant funding, we will be getting the Grant Committee together to start working on the Policies and Procedures and those will also be on February’s agenda for Board approval. Regarding the recently approved grants—all of those contracts have been fully executed and we have met with the recipients to discuss how to get into IowaGrants and administer their grant.

Amber Buckingham asked if there were any questions; no questions were asked.

Grant Modification Request for 21-IEC-003 – Baldridge Environmental Services LLC - Mobile Power for Rural Wastewater Treatment and Community Resilience – Attachment B
Amber Buckingham stated Baldridge Environmental Services LLC has
requested a budget modification amendment for award 20-IEC-003, Mobile
Power for Rural Wastewater Treatment and Community Resilience.
The PI has indicated that they have finalized the design of a second generation
microgrid that will be more efficient and more capable. Due to the enhanced
designed of the microgrid, the PI is requesting to increase the Equipment
budget line item by $35,000 to $92,500, while decreasing the Professional
Services and Salaries and Wages budget line items. These changes do not
impact the overall grant award request, which remains unchanged.
Administrative Rule 261 IAC 404.7(7)(a) provides that any substantive change
to a funded IEC project, including time extensions, budget revisions, and
alterations to proposed activities, will be considered an agreement amendment.
As this request is over $10,000, Board approval is necessary.
Staff recommendation is to approve the amendment to 21-IEC-003; moving the
requested funds from Salaries and Wages and Professional Services to

Chair DeJoode asked if there were questions; no questions were asked.
Motion by Dan Nickey
Motion I move to approve the grant modification request for
Second Scott Stokes
Roll Call Yes: 8 Abstain: 1
Motion approved.

Grant Modification Request for 20-IEC-016 – Iowa State University (ISU) – Improve Battery Energy Efficiency via Structural Design and 3D Printing for Electric Vehicles - Attachment C
Amber Buckingham stated Iowa State University (ISU) has requested a grant modification for award 20-IEC-016, Improve Battery Energy Efficiency via Structural Design and 3D Printing for Electric Vehicles.

The original Principal Investigator (PI) of this project, Dr. Hantang Qin has left Iowa State University and will no longer be PI on the project. ISU would like to transition the PI role to Dr. Shan Hu effective immediately. Dr. Hu is currently a Co-PI on the project and has the expertise necessary to successfully complete the project. The end date for the project is September 25, 2023.
Again, this is considered a substantive change and requires Board approval.

Staff recommendation is to approve the change of PI for 20-IEC-016, which will be effective November 17, 2022.

Chair DeJoode asked if there were questions; no questions were asked.
Motion by Scott Stokes

Motion I move to approve the grant modification request for
Second Stuart Anderson
Roll Call Yes: 9 Recuse: 0
Motion approved.

Grant Modification Request for 20-IEC-019 – Iowa State University (ISU) – Paired Electrolyzer for Conversion of Crude Glycerin and Waste CO2 - Attachment D
Amber Buckingham stated Iowa State University (ISU) has requested a grant modification for award 20-IEC-019, Paired Electrolyzer for Conversion of Crude Glycerin and Waste CO2.
Iowa State University has requested a budget modification of $10,391.23 and would like to move funds from Tuition, Supplies and Materials, Other Direct Costs and Other Direct Costs: Honoraria/Services to Indirect Costs, Payroll Benefits and Salaries and Wages. The PI has indicated the need for a final rebudget in order for the budget to match the final expenses and ensure that there are no overages.\

Again, this is considered substantive and requires Board approval, as it is over

Staff recommendation is to approve the budget modification for 20-IEC-019, moving $10,391.23 from Tuition, Supplies and Materials, Other Direct Costs, and Other Direct Costs: Honoraria/Services to Indirect Costs, Payroll Benefits and Salaries and Wages.

Chair DeJoode asked if there were questions; no questions were asked.
Motion by Dan Nickey
Motion I move to approve the budget modification request for
Second Jennifer Johnson
Roll Call Yes: 9 Recuse: 0
Motion approved.

Grant Termination Request for 20-IEC-015 – Iowa State University (ISU) – Attachment E
Amber Buckingham stated the Iowa Economic Development Authority received a request from Iowa State University to terminate the agreement for grant project 20-IEC-015 effective October 31, 2022.

The above referenced agreement was made to Iowa State University in the amount of $266,720 under the direction of Gul Kremer and Hantang Qin with an end date of September 25, 2023. Iowa State requests termination of this agreement effective October 31, 2022. Dr Gul Kremer, Hantang Qin and one of the graduate research assistants working on this project, have all left Iowa State
University. Therefore, under Section 10, Termination of Agreement 20-IEC-015, ISU no longer has sufficient staffing levels adequate to fulfill the obligations of the agreement. A total of $125,597.87 will be paid for work completed up to the agreement termination date of October 31, 2022, in accordance with Article 10 of the Grant Agreement. All unspent funds for this project will be de-obligated and returned to the grant fund.

Staff recommendation is to approve request for termination of the agreement for 20-IEC-015, effective October 31, 2022, de-obligating the remaining funds and returning them to the grant fund.

Chair DeJoode asked if there were questions. Dan Nickey asked how much the Grant Program will get back and Amber Buckingham replied that we will get back approximately $140,000. Stuart Anderson asked if a report was provided that showed some benefit for what was expended. Amber Buckingham replied she did ask them to provide a final report based on the work they have
completed and they are working on that. Stuart Anderson asked if we feel there is value of what was accomplished and Ms. Buckingham stated they created the 3D pipeline structures. The PI’s may re-apply with another university in another round to continue the project. No other questions were asked. 

Motion by Stuart Anderson
Motion I move to approve the request for termination of agreement
for grant project 20-IEC-015.
Second Dan Nickey
Roll Call Yes: 9 Recuse: 0
Motion approved.

Energy Infrastructure Revolving Loan Program (EIRLP) – EIRLP Update –
Stephanie Weisenbach stated in this quarterly cycle of the Energy Infrastructure Revolving Loan Program we did not receive any applications. We expected to receive one application that was mostly completed on the on-line system, but they informed us they would postpone applying due to delays they were having related to the materials and the supply chain and they wanted to wait until their costs and timeframes were more certain. Support for the Loan Program remains high, especially as interest rates from the private sector lenders are increasing. 

We have set the quarterly deadlines for 2023 for those application cycles and we plan to conduct additional outreach and marketing in the next two months to clarify updates to the program and follow-up with previous inquiries and plan on those future applications.

Ms. Weisenbach asked if there were questions; no questions were asked.

Proposed Updates to Policies and Procedures – Attachment F
Stephanie Weisenbach explained the policies and procedures for the Energy Infrastructure Revolving Loan Program is a document to provide the program requirements and the framework of how the program will be administered. The Administrative Rules for the EIRLP require this document to be prepared by IEDA and approved by the Board. The IEC Board approved the current version of the handbook in September 2021. This document will be reviewed and approved by the IEC Board at least once per year and will remain in effect until any changes are adopted by the Board. Staff expects to update it once per calendar year, but it may be updated more frequently if time-sensitive changes arise.

Administrative Rules for the program specify that the policies and procedures shall include the amount of program funds to be allocated for each application cycle, scoring criteria to be used if the demand for loans exceeds the amount allocated for any application cycle and the applicable interest rate or rates for approved loans.

Some of the proposed revisions originate from review of applications by staff and the Loan Committee. The Loan Committee has discussed this annual update at two recent meetings. The result is the document provided in Board Papers. If the Board approves this update, it will be posted to the program webpage and provided to interested parties.

Stephanie Weisenbach displayed and explained her PowerPoint presentation.
Stephanie Weisenbach asked if anyone had questions, but no questions were
Motion by Matt Washburn
Motion Approve the updates to IEC’s Policies and Procedures.
Second Craig Just
Voice Vote All ayes in favor. Motion approved.

Appointment of Vice Chair - Attachment G
Lisa Connell explained former board member, Jenae Sikkink, resigned her position on the Iowa Energy Center Board as of September 20, 2022. That not only created a vacancy on the Board, but also a vacancy of the Vice Chair position. Stuart Anderson is willing to serve in that role, so that would be our recommendation that you elect Stu as your Vice Chair.

Motion by Scott Stokes
Motion Motion to approve appointment of Stuart Anderson as Vice
Chair through June 30, 2023.
Second Matt Washburn
Voice Vote All ayes in favor. Motion approved.

Other Business
Troy DeJoode turned it over to Brian Selinger to give Energy Office updates.

Energy Center Office Updates
Brian Selinger stated we still have two Board vacancies—Iowa State University—since Gul had left. ISU has identified their Board applicant and that individual has applied so we are waiting through that process to get that reviewed and hopefully appointed by the February Board meeting. Also, with Jenae’s departure, we have the private college and university seat that is vacant. I have spoken with the Iowa Association of Independent Colleges and Universities and they are working hard to identify their preferred board applicant. I do not think they have found that individual yet, but they are working on that. Hopefully, by the February Board meeting we will have a full
complement of board members.

Brian Selinger stated it is that time of year where there are a lot of annual reports due. We will be putting together our Annual Report for the Iowa Energy Center and we will get that to you guys when that is done.

Brian Selinger stated that we were able to secure the dates of our four quarterly IEC Board meetings for 2023. The dates are February 23, 2023; May 11, 2023; August 10, 2023; and November 16, 2023.

Brian Selinger stated we will be in touch with you as the February 23rd IEC Board meeting draws near.

Public Comment Period
No public comments.

Chairperson DeJoode adjourned the meeting.

Adjournment 1:34 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,
Betty Hessing, IEC Board Administrator