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  • Writer's pictureKristin Cooper

FY 2020 Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Notice of Funding Opportunity

Dates: There are no submission deadlines. Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis until the publication of a new PWEAA NOFO, cancellation of this PWEAA NOFO, or all available funds have been expended. EDA intends to review applications within 60 days of receipt. Please see Section E of this NOFO for complete information on EDA’s review process.

Funding Opportunity Description: EDA provides strategic investments on a competitive merit basis to support economic development, foster job creation, and attract private investment in economically distressed areas of the United States. Under this NOFO, EDA solicits applications from applicants in order to provide investments that support construction, non-construction, planning, technical assistance, and revolving loan fund projects under EDA’s Public Works program and EAA program (which includes Assistance to Coal Communities). Grants and cooperative agreements made under these programs are designed to leverage existing regional assets and support the implementation of economic development strategies that advance new ideas and creative approaches to advance economic prosperity in distressed communities, including those negatively impacted by changes to the coal economy.

Eligible applicants: EDA is not authorized to provide grants or cooperative agreements under its Public Works or EAA programs to individuals or for-profit entities. Requests from such entities will not be considered for funding. Pursuant to Section 3(4) of PWEDA (42 U.S.C. § 3122(4)(a)) and 13 C.F.R. § 300.3 (Eligible Recipient), eligible applicants for EDA financial assistance under the Public Works and EAA programs include a(n): (i) District Organization of an EDA-designated Economic Development District; (ii) Indian Tribe or a consortium of Indian Tribes; (iii) State, county, city, or other political subdivision of a State, including a special purpose unit of a State or local government engaged in economic or infrastructure development activities, or a consortium of political subdivisions; (iv) institution of higher education or a consortium of institutions of higher education; or (v) public or private non-profit organization or association acting in cooperation with officials of a political subdivision of a State.

EDA’s Public Works and EAA programs provide economically distressed communities and regions with comprehensive and flexible resources to address a wide variety of economic needs. Projects funded by these programs will support the DOC Strategic Plan (2018-2022) by, among other things, advancing innovation, enhancing the manufacturing and export capacities of regions, providing workforce development opportunities, and growing ecosystems that attract foreign direct investment. Through these programs, EDA supports bottom-up strategies that build on regional assets to spur economic growth and resiliency. EDA encourages its grantees throughout the country to develop initiatives that present new ideas and creative approaches to advance economic prosperity in distressed communities.

EDA Investment Priorities All projects considered for EDA funding under this NOFO must be consistent with at least one of EDA’s Investment Priorities. EDA’s Investment Priorities can be found at EDA’s website will be updated on January 15, April 15, June 15, or September 15 of each year if there are any revisions to these Investment Priorities.

Except for a “Strategy Grant,” as described below, each project funded under Public Works and EAA must be consistent with the region’s current Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) or equivalent EDA-accepted regional economic development strategy that meets EDA’s CEDS or strategy requirements. Applicants must clearly detail how the project will support the economic development needs and objectives outlined in the CEDS or equivalent EDA-accepted regional economic development strategy. Applicants should identify the CEDS or equivalent EDA-accepted regional economic development strategy and provide a copy of this planning document, either by attaching the document to the application or including the web link for the document. In addition, applicants should indicate if other Federal funds have been secured for, or have been requested to support, any portion of the project for which an EDA investment is proposed. Applicants should describe how the EDA investment will complement, leverage, or otherwise align with other public and private investments to implement the project. Where other Federal funding may be involved in the project, the applicant should provide the Federal program name and contact information with their application in order to facilitate interagency coordination and avoid duplication of resources.

Under this NOFO, applicants may also seek funding in the form of a “Strategy Grant” to develop, update, or refine a CEDS that alleviates long-term economic deterioration or a sudden and severe economic dislocation, as described in EDA’s regulations at 13 C.F.R. § 307.3.

Through the Public Works program, EDA provides catalytic investments to help distressed communities build, design, or engineer critical infrastructure and facilities that will help implement regional development strategies and advance bottom-up economic development goals to promote regional prosperity. The Public Works program provides resources to meet the construction and/or infrastructure design needs of communities to enable them to become more economically competitive. Prior examples of investments EDA has supported through the Public Works program include projects supporting water and sewer system improvements, industrial parks, high-tech shipping and logistics facilities, workforce training facilities, business incubators and accelerators, brownfield redevelopment, technology-based facilities, wet labs, multi-tenant manufacturing facilities, science and research parks, and telecommunications infrastructure and development facilities.

As noted above, investments made through the Public Works program must be aligned with a current CEDS or equivalent EDA-accepted regional economic development strategy and clearly lead to the creation or retention of long-term high-quality jobs. For example, under this program, EDA may provide funding to a consortium of eligible recipients to support the construction of a technology center that provides laboratory, office, and manufacturing space that leads to the creation of advanced manufacturing jobs. As another example, EDA may provide funding to a county government to support regional job creation in targeted cluster industries and expand those industries’ ability to export goods.

Through the EAA program, EDA provides investments that support a wide range of construction and non-construction activities (including infrastructure, design and engineering, technical assistance, economic recovery strategies, and capitalization or re-capitalization of Revolving Loan Funds (RLF)) in regions experiencing severe economic dislocations that may occur suddenly or over time. EDA utilizes EAA investments to provide resources that help communities experiencing or anticipating economic dislocations to plan and implement specific solutions to leverage their existing regional economic advantages to support economic development and job creation. Like Public Works investments, EAA investments are designed to help communities catalyze public-private partnerships to foster collaboration, attract investment, create jobs, and foster economic resiliency and prosperity. For example, EDA might provide funding to a university or community college to create and launch an economic diversification strategy to promote and enhance the growth of emerging industries in a region facing job losses due to declines in regionally important industries. As another example, EDA might provide funding to a city to support the construction of a publicly-owned multi-tenant business and industrial facility to house early-stage businesses.

Contact Grant Management Associates for grant writing assistance.

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