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EDA Seeks Applications for Targeted Pre-Development Technical Assistance to Distressed Small, Rural and Underserved Communities

EDA is interested in receiving applications for one or more National Technical Assistance (NTA) cooperative agreement(s) to provide guidance and direct technical assistance to distressed small, rural, and underserved communities in pre-development activities associated with accessing EDA programs and services.

EDA anticipates making available up to $500,000 for this purpose. This is in recognition of Congress encouraging EDA to support non-profit organizations to assist economically distressed small, rural, and underserved communities in pre-development activities associated with accessing EDA programs and services. This opportunity is being made available under the existing Research and National Technical Assistance (RNTA) NOFO.

Interested applicant organizations should review the RNTA NOFO for information on eligible entities, eligible activities, and past successful projects under EDA’s NTA program. For organizations to be considered for this specific funding source, proposed activities should include the development and refinement of best practices associated with pre-development activities associated with seeking EDA assistance.

In addition to the criteria specified in the RNTA NOFO, a responsive application for funds specific to supporting “Distressed Small, Rural, and Underserved Communities” should include details pertaining to the following items in the scope of work:

  • Source of, and ability to, provide matching funds
  • Deep knowledge of EDA programs and application requirements, as well as expertise in helping these types of communities seek and receive federal funding for economic development
  • Experience and organizational mission alignment for working with communities which are:
    • Distressed
    • Small
    • Rural
    • Underserved
  • A well-defined and easily explainable concept around what constitutes “pre-development activities associated with accessing EDA programs and services”.
  • A well-defined strategy for engaging, working with, and selecting communities which meet the definition of “Distressed Small, Rural, and Underserved”
  • A scope of work could include (but not be limited to):
    • Community asset mapping
    • Identification of available funding opportunities and resources
    • Organizing or facilitating necessary convenings
    • Clearing up any “encumbrances” on sites to determine eligibility for EDA or other funding programs
    • Organizational development to build capacity to successfully compete for EDA funding
    • Identification of potential local partners and determining applicability for successful grant applications
    • Finding qualified resources to do an environmental review
    • Certified site activities
    • Marketing
    • Engagement and analysis for entrepreneurs at the local level
    • Developing partnerships and coordinating with Economic Development Districts (EDDs)
    • Developing processes for engaging, procuring, and managing professional services
  • Plans for amplification of this technical assistance program via social media or project rollout strategy for engaging communities in need of support.

For organizations interested in applying for this cooperative agreement opportunity, EDA is requesting applications specific to supporting Distressed Small, Rural, and Underserved Communities be submitted by June 1st, 2021 and expects to make one or more awards by August 30, 2021.

Applications should be submitted via Grants.gov to the existing RNTA NOFO and any questions regarding this opportunity should be sent to RNTA@eda.gov. Examples of successful past projects are listed within the RNTA NOFO.

Research and National Technical Assistance (RNTA)

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