Backers of a new biomass electricity facility in Somerset County have received certification from a state financing agency for $12 million in state tax credits.

Athens Energy, which is an affiliate of a Maine Wood Pellets Co. LLC in Athens, received certification for Maine New Markets tax credits by directors of the Finance Authority of Maine at the board’s July 17 meeting.

The certification allows the company to use the promise of tax credits to help attract financing for the project, according to a release from FAME.

The Maine New Markets Capital Investment Program provides refundable state tax credits of up to 39 percent to investors in qualified community development entities that reinvest in businesses in low-income communities in Maine. The program is modeled after the federal New Markets Tax Credit Program, and is administered by FAME in cooperation with Maine Revenue Services and the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development.

The certification was awarded to three subsidiaries of CCG Community Partners LLC, which expects to leverage $30.3 million in investment in the biomass facility. The investments will be in the form of loans to Athens Energy to be used for construction and equipping of a biomass electricity generator and the payment of transaction costs. The investments also will help to expand the associated wood pellet production facility, according to a press release.