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U.S. Department of Commerce Invests More Than $10 Million in 9 States to Strengthen Business Infrastructure and Boost Job and Economic Growth


WASHINGTON - Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank today announced more than $10 million in Economic Development Administration (EDA) grants in 9 states to help strengthen local business development and job growth. The states receiving funds are California, Connecticut, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.

"This $10 million in Economic Development Administration investments are examples of the Obama administration's commitment to helping our nation's communities and regions realize their locally-grown plans to create new jobs," said Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank. "The grants announced today will help communities build critical infrastructure, establish financing, and provide assistance to encourage business growth and create jobs."

The investments announced today include:

  • A $2.1 million EDA grant to San Leandro, California, to help construct a fiber-optic network needed to provide local businesses with virtually unlimited broadband speed and bandwidth so that they can grow and create new jobs.

  • A $964,250 EDA investment in Preston, Connecticut, to help prepare the former Norwich Hospital property for commercial reuse as part of the Riverwalk Development project. The grant will support the demolition of 15 buildings at the former hospital site.

  • A $1.5 million EDA grant to the Knox County Development Corporation and the city of Vincennes in Knox County, Indiana, to help make water and sewer infrastructure improvements needed to bring a new Farbest Food, Inc., turkey processing plant and other new businesses to the U.S. Highway 41 Industrial Park.

  • A $332,405 EDA grant to Michigan State University in Michigan to help the university advance their Innovative Regional Infrastructure Exporting Initiative for Small and Medium Businesses, to identify and develop existing infrastructure and assets in the region to gain a clear picture of the region's exporting capabilities in order to help small and medium-sized businesses leverage these assets to expand export opportunities.

  • A $1.2 million EDA investment in Dawson, Minnesota, to help to make critical roadway and wastewater infrastructure improvements at the Dawson Industrial Park to attract new businesses and jobs to the region.

  • A $150,000 EDA grant to the Region Five Development Commission and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development in Staples, Minnesota, to help develop a plan to guide the establishment of a Proof of Concept Center that will work to support Minnesota's renewable energy industry and commercialize the technology that exists within the state.

  • A $2.2 million EDA investment in the Village of Greenville, Ohio, to help to upgrade 29 miles of city-owned rail to ensure reliable transportation infrastructure to serve the region's manufacturers and other businesses.

  • A $275,000 EDA investment in Lehigh University in the Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania, to support the Lehigh Valley Urban Entrepreneurship Collaborative, which is working to support fledgling business, educate entrepreneurs, and facilitate retention of a skilled workforce in the area.

  • A $1 million EDA investment in Abbeville, South Carolina, to help build a new business incubator facility within the Lakelands Commerce Center that will provide office space and technical assistance to fledgling entrepreneurs and small businesses to enhance ongoing efforts that support the development of sustainable businesses.

  • A $600,000 EDA grant in Racine, Wisconsin, to recapitalize an existing Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) that is providing critical gap financing to help establish, retain, and grow job-creating businesses.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.