U.S. EDA Announces $2.4 Million in Grants to Help Increase Montana's Global Competitiveness
September 13, 2010
Contact: John Atwood, (202) 482-4085
BUTTE, Mont. - U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development John Fernandez and U.S. Sen. Max Baucus today announced $2.4 million in U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) grants to help communities in Montana adjust to increasing competition in the global marketplace, better positioning them to create jobs and boost their local economies.
"The Obama administration is committed to helping main street businesses strengthen their global competitiveness," Fernandez said. "With Sen. Baucus' leadership, these EDA investments will help create jobs and support economic growth in Montana by implementing projects that will work to diversify regional economies and keep local companies competitive."
The grants announced today include:
- $1.147 million to the Flathead County Economic Development Authority of Kalispell for site acquisition of the Columbia Falls Rail Park. The Park will serve manufacturers of value-added wood products and related businesses.
- $634,130 to the town of Eureka to fund the engineering, design and construction of the Wood Development Center to be located at the Tobacco Valley Industrial District Business Park. The Center will focus on enhancing development of value-added wood industries, biomass, and small-diameter, specialty mill production by providing shared office resources and support to multiple entrepreneurs.
- $627,000 to the Bitterroot Economic Development District, Inc., of Missoula to help create and retain jobs in the timber industry by implementing a competitive strategy to guide economic diversification efforts in a four-county region.
Earlier this year, President Obama unveiled his National Export Initiative (NEI), an effort to help U.S. businesses sell their goods and services abroad with a goal of doubling U.S. exports over the next five years in support of 2 million American jobs. Through the NEI, the federal government is expanding its trade advocacy efforts in all forms, including educating U.S. companies about opportunities overseas, directly connecting U.S. companies with new customers, and advocating more forcefully for U.S. company interests in contracting processes.
These grants are funded under EDA's Community Trade Adjustment Assistance (CTAA) Program, which is aimed at helping to create and retain jobs by providing project grants to communities (cities, counties, or other political subdivisions of a state or a consortium of political subdivisions of a state, including District Organizations of Economic Development Districts) that have experienced, or are threatened by, job loss resulting from increased global competition.
Grants under the program can be used to support a wide range of technical, planning, and infrastructure projects to help communities adapt to the global marketplace and diversify their economies. Additional information is available at: http://www.eda.gov/InvestmentsGrants/CommunityTAA.xml.
About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov): This year, the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) marks 45 years of public service, with a mission of leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing American regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. EDA is an agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce that partners with distressed communities throughout the United States to foster job creation, collaboration and innovation.