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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1.4 Million in American Rescue Plan Funds to Boost Business Growth in Umatilla, Oregon

Award is Part of the Department of Commerce’s $300 million Coal Communities Commitment

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.4 million grant to the city of Umatilla, Oregon, to boost opportunities for local business expansion through renovation of a former Post Office building, parking lot, and public space. This grant is funded by the American Rescue Plan and EDA’s $300 million Coal Communities Commitment.

This grant will provide local businesses with access to low-cost operating space in a region impacted by the declining use of coal. The EDA investment will be matched with $360,251 in local funds.

“President Biden is committed to ensuring that our coal communities are provided with the resources they need to diversify and grow their economies,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “This EDA investment will provide needed infrastructure to support business growth leading to a robust regional economy.”

“The Economic Development Administration is dedicated to working with communities to support their locally-driven strategies to recover and rebuild from the pandemic,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “This project will provide needed infrastructure upgrades to support the region’s business community and spur private investment in Umatilla.”

“This federal investment will generate jobs in Eastern Oregon and build a stronger small business climate in the city of Umatilla,” said Senator Ron Wyden. “I’m gratified the American Rescue Plan I was proud to support is making such a positive contribution to downtown Umatilla with this much-needed renovation project.”

“As we transition from fossil fuels, we must support the communities that relied on those industries and provide resources that allow local businesses and economies to grow and expand,” said Senator Jeff Merkley. “This EDA funding to Umatilla will provide crucial resources to small businesses and help support the economy as it recovers from the pandemic and rebuilds stronger for the future.”

This project is funded under EDA’s American Rescue Plan Economic Adjustment Assistance program, which makes $500 million in Economic Adjustment Assistance grants available to American communities. The Economic Adjustment Assistance program is EDA’s most flexible program, and grants made under this program will help hundreds of communities across the nation plan, build, innovate, and put people back to work through construction or non-construction projects designed to meet local needs.

EDA’s Coal Communities Commitment allocates $300 million of EDA’s $3 billion American Rescue Plan appropriation to support coal communities as they recover from the pandemic and to help them create new jobs and opportunities, including through the creation or expansion of a new industry sector. Specifically, EDA has dedicated $100 million of its Build Back Better Regional Challenge funds and $200 million of its Economic Adjustment Assistance funds to directly support coal communities. Effective May 26, 2022, EDA has officially closed all of its American Rescue Plan programs for applications. The $3 billion program funding will be awarded on a rolling basis through September 30, 2022.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in communities and supports regional collaboration in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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