In my last post I talked about federal grant opportunities–today we will take a look at some of the different types of state grants for businesses.
Most—but not all—states offer some sort of economic development assistance to businesses. These funds are used to entice new businesses to relocate to a particular state, foster the development of new enterprises and encourage existing businesses to remain in the state or expand. Financial assistance can be in the form of grants, cooperative agreements, tax incentives or loans. Below are some examples of state grants awarded to businesses in recent years:
Several years ago, the Wyoming State and Loan Investment Board approved $10.5 million in grants to businesses in the State of Wyoming. The awards included $4.5 million to develop a planned National Center Atmospheric Research facility, $3 million for a manufacturing plant and $3 million to help an online language instruction company to build a new headquarters. These are examples of some of the larger grants that states make to small businesses to relocate, expand, retain jobs or create jobs.
States also give out millions of dollars in smaller grants to support businesses as well. For instance, the Ohio Department of Development awarded $220,000 in Microenterprise Business Development Program grants throughout the state. These funds came from a Federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) formula grant. This is an example of a ‘pass-through’ grant where the Federal government awards funds to states via a specified formula. States then pass the funds on to other state agencies, which then award the funds to various eligible entities—including small businesses. Through this effort ten microenterprises (firms with five or fewer employees including the owner) were awarded grants to support the ‘growth and vitality’ of the businesses.
Nearly every state has some sort of grant program available to support small businesses. For example, a quick search on the State of Pennsylvania website (http://www.newpa.com) turned up 70 different grant opportunities available to small businesses in the state. Contact me for information about how to uncover business grants offered by your state.