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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $3.2 Million in CARES Act Funding to Boost Economic Development Programs Critical to Helping South Carolina

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding $3.2 million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to eight EDA Economic Development District organizations across South Carolina 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 South Carolina with resources to make a swift and lasting economic comeback.”

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

“It’s clear that this targeted investment is what our small businesses need to get back on their feet,” said Governor Henry McMaster. “President Trump’s Administration’s investment will ultimately create and save countless jobs, serving as a catalyst to get our economy back to the record strength we saw before COVID-19.”

“In South Carolina, each of our Economic Development Districts are keenly aware of the challenges faced by the citizens, businesses, and governments in their region,” said Congressman Ralph Norman (SC-05). “I am pleased to see $3.2 million in grants to eight of our state’s Economic Development Districts through the recent CARES Act. It’s clear these funds will be put to good use on a variety of important efforts ranging from economic development to COVID-19 response. I want to thank all of South Carolina’s Economic Development Districts as well as the U.S. Department of Commerce for their tremendous efforts to keep our state’s economy moving forward.”

“The CARES Act funds awarded to the Pee Dee and Waccamaw Regional Councils of Governments will provide relief from the economic crisis brought on by coronavirus and ignite the economy,” said Congressman Tom Rice (SC-07). “We will keep working with the Trump Administration to get results for the Seventh District.”

The EDA investments announced today are:

  • Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Government, North Charleston, South Carolina, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by developing and supporting the implementation of a comprehensive short- and long-term economic disaster plan to boost the region’s critical tourism sector, address public health concerns, and assess infrastructure and service needs.
  • Catawba Regional Council of Governments, Rock Hill, South Carolina, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by updating its Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS); focusing on regional resiliency and disaster response by creating a regional infrastructure plan; and developing a regional strategy for adaptive reuse of under-utilized public assets.
  • Central Midlands Council of Governments, Columbia, South Carolina, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by developing strategies to strengthen key sectors of the regional economy including small businesses and businesses owned by women and minorities.
  • Lower Savannah Council of Governments, Aiken, South Carolina, 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.
  • Pee Dee Regional Council of Governments, Florence, South Carolina, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by supporting local governments with economic recovery and mitigation assistance.
  • Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments, Sumter, South Carolina, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by facilitating studies of broadband service gaps among business and residential communities and industry adaptability to post-pandemic conditions.
  • Upper Savannah Council of Governments, Greenwood, South Carolina, 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 to support pandemic recovery efforts.
  • Waccamaw Regional Council of Governments, Georgetown, South Carolina, will receive a $400,000 EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to respond to the coronavirus pandemic by providing planning, coordination, technical assistance, and organizational capacity-building to bolster economic development activities in the region.

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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