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Rural Business Development Grants

Open Date:

9/27/2021

Close Date:

2/28/2022

Upcoming Milestones:

Eligible Recipients:

  • Local Government
  • Native/Tribal Entity
  • Non-profit

Program Purpose:

Economic Development

Reserved for Energy
Communities?

No

Funded by:

U.S. Department of Agriculture

Overview

What does this program do?
This program is designed to provide technical assistance and training for small rural businesses. Small means that the business has fewer than 50 new workers and less than $1 million in gross revenue.

Who may apply for this program?
Rural public entities including, but not limited to:

  • Towns
  • Communities
  • State agencies
  • Authorities
  • Nonprofit corporations
  • Institutions of higher education
  • Federally-recognized tribes
  • Rural cooperatives (if organized as a private nonprofit corporation)

What is an eligible area?
Rural Business Development Grant money must be used for projects that benefit rural areas or towns outside the urbanized periphery of any city with a population of 50,000 or more. Check eligible areas.

What kind of funding is available?
There is no maximum grant amount; however, smaller requests are given higher priority. There is no cost sharing requirement. Opportunity grants are limited to up to 10 percent of the total Rural Business Development Grant annual funding.

How may funds be used?
Enterprise grants must be used on projects to benefit small and emerging businesses in rural areas as specified in the grant application. Uses may include:

  • Training and technical assistance, such as project planning, business counseling and training, market research, feasibility studies, professional or/technical reports or producer service improvements
  • Acquisition or development of land, easements, or rights of way; construction, conversion, renovation of buildings; plants, machinery, equipment, access for streets and roads; parking areas and utilities
  • Pollution control and abatement
  • The capitalization of revolving loan funds, including funds that will make loans for start-ups and working capital
  • Distance adult learning for job training and advancement
  • Rural transportation improvement
  • Community economic development
  • Technology-based economic development
  • Feasibility studies and business plans
  • Leadership and entrepreneur training
  • Rural business incubators
  • Long-term business strategic planning

Opportunity grants can be used for:

  • Community economic development
  • Technology-based economic development
  • Feasibility studies and business plans
  • Leadership and entrepreneur training
  • Rural business incubators
  • Long-term business strategic planning.

How are applications evaluated?
All applications are evaluated based on:

  • Evidence showing job creation at local businesses
  • Percent of non-federal funding committed to the project
  • Economic need in the area to be served
  • Consistency with local economic development priorities
  • Experience of the grantee with similar efforts

Other factors are described in the current Notice of Solicitation of Applications (NOSA), if one is published.

Funding Details

Funding Source:
Funding Type:
Grant – no match
Total Amount Available:
$0
Limit per Applicant:
$10,000-$500,000
Estimated Awards:
Not stated

Applicant Guidance

Contact Information

Contact your Rural Development State Office, which can be found at: https://www.rd.usda.gov/about-rd/state-offices.

 

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