On June 23, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced the Economic Development Administration (EDA) is now accepting applications for a grant program to assist coal-impacted communities under the FY 2017 Economic Development Assistance Program. The Assistance to Coal Communities initiative provides funding for communities, including counties and regions that have been negatively impacted by changes in the coal economy.
The Assistance to Coal Communities (ACC) will award up to $30 million “on a competitive basis to assist communities severely impacted by the declining use of coal through activities and programs that support economic diversification, job creation, capital investment, workforce development and re-employment opportunities.”
Applicants eligible to receive the ACC 2017 funds are communities and regions that can demonstrate how changes in our nation’s coal economy have affected or will affect their local economy as it pertains to job losses and lay-offs in any coal-reliant commercial sector or sectors. Applications for the ACC 2017 funds are available online until all available funding has been exhausted.
On Tuesday, June 27 at 3:00pm EDT, EDA will present an informational webinar on the Assistance to Coal Communities 2017 initiative. Click here to register. To learn more about the ACC 2017 initiative, visit: www.eda.gov/coal.
The National Association of Counties and the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Research Foundation, with the support of the U.S. Economic Development Administration, are partnering to support county and regional leaders in coal-reliant communities with retooling their economies to become more resilient to changing conditions. This past April, NACo and NADO Research Foundation hosted the Strengthening Economies in the West forum in Denver, an event that kicked off a three-year project with the EDA Denver regional office, to provide technical assistance to coal-reliant counties and regions in Colorado, Montana, Utah and Wyoming. The forum brought together stakeholders from a variety of public and private sectors for an interactive gathering that shared best practices, lessons learned, and new opportunities to support economic diversification. NACo will host additional workshops designed to boost the innovative potential of coal-reliant counties and regions through 2019.
NACo supports federal grants that strengthen the economic base of local governments and foster innovation on a local level. We will continue to monitor grant availability announcements that will strengthen local communities.