The Obama administration released on Thursday another $15 million from economic stimulus funds for weatherization assistance programs in Utah.

"Today's investments will save money for hard-working families, reduce pollution, strengthen local economies and help move America toward a clean energy future," said Energy Secretary Steven Chu as he released the funds.

The $15 million amounts to 40 percent of what the stimulus package allowed for the program in Utah, and was released after approval of a comprehensive state plan for weatherization.

It adds to the initial 10 percent funding allocation previously given to the state for training and ramp-up activities. After demonstrating successful implementation of its plan, Utah may receive an additional $18 million — for a total of more than $37 million.

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Utah intends to use the money to help weatherize more than 4,400 homes to help save energy and money on heating and air conditioning. Priority will be given to the elderly, disabled and homes where preschool children may spend a majority of their time indoors.

Most of the money is being funneled to local agencies including: the Salt Lake Community Action Program, the Housing Authority of Utah County, Davis County Aging Services, the Bear River Association of Governments, the Southeastern Utah Association of Local Governments and others.

— Lee Davidson