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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $2.8 Million in CARES Act Funding to Boost Economic Development Programs Critical to Helping Alabama Respond to Coronavirus

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding $2.8 million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to seven EDA Economic Development District organizations across Alabama 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 Alabama with resources to make a swift and lasting economic comeback.”

“These investments come at a crucial time to help Alabama’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 Alabama’s EDA Economic Development Districts to help them prevent, prepare, and respond to coronavirus.”

“I am proud to continue supporting the Trump Administration’s mission to quickly get this much-needed aid in the hands of those Alabamians who have been impacted by COVID-19,” said Governor Kay Ivey. “With this necessary support, we will get Alabama and our country back to the levels that we saw just a few months ago. It is critical we take the steps now to ensure we have a successful comeback, and I am grateful to Secretary Ross and his team for selecting Alabama for this $2.8 million in CARES Act grants that will help make that possible.”

“This EDA funding is welcome news and will help Alabama communities respond and recover from the negative economic impacts of COVID-19,” said Senator Richard Shelby. “I appreciate EDA’s continued investment in our state’s ongoing relief efforts.”

The EDA investments announced today are:

  • North Central Alabama Regional Council of Governments, Decatur, Alabama, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by addressing short- and long-term recovery efforts with economic development plans focused on the tourism, transportation, food, and education sectors.
  • South Alabama Regional Planning Commission, Mobile, Alabama, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by developing an economic strategic plan to diversify the region’s economy, bolster the workforce, and establish resiliency.
  • South Central Alabama Development Commission, Montgomery, Alabama, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by developing a regional economic response and recovery plan; assisting with tourism recovery and development strategies; and assisting with local infrastructure costs to boost community resiliency.
  • Top of Alabama Regional Council of Governments, Huntsville, Alabama, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by creating plans to strengthen its partners’ capacity to remain resilient during emergencies and disasters.
  • West Alabama Regional Commission, Northport, Alabama, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by evaluating the pandemic’s impact on the region’s economy; increasing leadership capacity and response; and helping to implement strategies, programs, and projects that support pandemic resilience and recovery.
  • Regional Planning Commission of Greater Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by providing technical assistance to communities and businesses in its six-county region.
  • Central Alabama Regional Planning and Development Commission, Montgomery, Alabama, will receive a $399,739 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by supporting the development of a disaster recovery, resiliency, and economic development plan; funding a regional disaster economic recovery coordinator for two years; and providing organizational capacity support for pandemic response, including technology costs and additional hiring as needed.

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 (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.

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