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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1.6 Million in CARES Act Funding to Boost Economic Development Programs Critical to Helping Nebraska Respond to Coronavirus

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding $1.6 million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to four EDA Economic Development District organizations across Nebraska to update economic development plans and fortify programs to assist communities in responding to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The Trump Administration is eager to allocate these essential CARES Act funds and deliver on our promise to help American communities recover from the impact of COVID-19,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “I am proud of the perseverance and strength shown by our communities coast to coast throughout this pandemic, and these funds will help provide Nebraska with resources to make a swift and lasting economic comeback.”

“These investments come at a crucial time to help Nebraska’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. “We are pleased to make these investments in Nebraska’s EDA Economic Development Districts to help them prevent, prepare, and respond to coronavirus.”

“Today’s announcement from the EDA represents another critical investment in the Heartland,” said Senator Deb Fischer. “These resources, which were approved by Congress, will help keep Nebraskans healthy and safe during this pandemic. The funding will bring relief to Nebraska communities, boost local economies, and support their sustained recoveries.”

“The CARES Act has been essential to Nebraska’s second district by providing the necessary funding needed for medical equipment and supplies, and has assisted businesses with payroll, rent and other expenses, to help them during this time of crisis,” said Congressman Don Bacon (NE-02). “It is time we start to renew, restore, and rebuild our communities. I thank the U.S. Department of Commerce for their efforts in boosting Nebraska’s economic development districts and being an advocate for our local business sector.”

The EDA investments announced today are:

  • Northeast Nebraska Economic Development District, Norfolk, Nebraska, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by assisting with recovery efforts, boosting the region’s economy, and supporting workforce needs.
  • Omaha-Council Bluffs Metropolitan Area Planning Agency, Omaha, Nebraska, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by coordinating with regional economic development partners to develop recovery and resiliency strategies, including small business assistance, entrepreneurial development, and online business development.
  • Southeast Nebraska Development District, Lincoln, Nebraska, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by exploring ways to improve broadband access and collaborating with partners to conduct a broadband study; reactivating local economies by building new supply chains; and creating a more self-reliant and robust area economy.
  • West Central Nebraska Development District, Ogallala, Nebraska, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by providing technical assistance to local businesses and communities.

These entities, all EDA-designated Economic Development Districts (EDD), are some of the more than 850 existing, high-performing EDA EDD, University Center, Tribal, and Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) 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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