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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $6.5 Million in CARES Act Funding to Capitalize Revolving Loan Funds to Help Small Businesses Across Florida Respond to Coronavirus

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding $6.5 million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to capitalize and administer Revolving Loan Funds (RLFs) that will provide critical gap financing to small businesses and entrepreneurs adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic across Florida.

“President Trump is working diligently every day to support our nation’s economy following the impacts of COVID-19 through the CARES Act,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “These investments will provide small businesses across Florida with the necessary capital to rebound from the coronavirus pandemic and, in turn, create a stronger and more resilient state economy for the future.”

“These investments come at a crucial time to help Florida’s and our nation’s economy come roaring back and provide hard-working Americans with new opportunities,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “Small businesses are the lifeblood of our communities, and EDA is pleased to invest these CARES Act funds so that Florida businesses have access to capital to respond to and recover from the coronavirus pandemic.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted Florida’s economy, especially small businesses across our state through no fault of their own,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “This $6.5 million in recovery funding will support our small businesses and help them get back on their feet. Thank you to President Trump and Secretary Ross for their continued support of Floridians as we work to emerge from these tough times stronger than before.”

“I welcome the Department of Commerce’s announcement that the Administration is investing funds from the CARES Act into Florida’s small businesses that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Senator Marco Rubio. “Ensuring an equitable economic recovery for our nation’s small businesses -- especially in underserved communities that were hit hard -- is critical. I am pleased that the Administration has continued to prioritize small business relief, and I look forward to continuing to work with my congressional colleagues to ensure businesses receive the support they need.”

The EDA investments announced today are:

  • South Florida Regional Planning Council, Inc., Hollywood, Florida, will receive a $5.9 million EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to capitalize and administer an RLF to make loans to coronavirus-impacted businesses in Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe, and Palm Beach counties.
  • Apalachee Regional Planning Council, Tallahassee, Florida, will receive a $638,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to capitalize and administer an RLF to make loans to coronavirus-impacted businesses in Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, and Wakulla counties.

These current EDA RLF grantees are some of the more than 850 existing, high-performing EDA RLF, Economic Development District, University Center, and Tribal grant recipients invited to apply for supplemental funding under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

The CARES Act, signed into law by President Donald J. Trump, provides EDA with $1.5 billion for economic development assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus pandemic.

On May 7, Secretary Ross announced that EDA is accepting applications for CARES Act Recovery Assistance funding opportunities.

EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. For complete information, please visit our recently updated EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance page.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (
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.

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