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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1.8 Million to Make Infrastructure Improvements to Support Tribal Business Development in Spokane, Washington, Opportunity Zone

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.8 million grant to the Spokane Tribe of Indians, Wellpinit, Washington, to make critical roadway infrastructure improvements needed to support business development in the region. The EDA grant, to be located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Opportunity Zone, is expected to create 200 jobs and generate nearly $13 million in private investment.

“The Trump Administration is dedicated to advancing economic growth and business development in tribal communities throughout the United States,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “Improved transportation infrastructure in a Wellpinit Opportunity Zone will increase economic activity and provide more employment opportunities for the local workforce.”

“EDA is pleased to support the Spokane Tribe of Indians’ strategy to diversify the tribal economy,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This project will support the construction of critical utility and roadway infrastructure to support future business development and its location in an Opportunity Zone will also provide incentives for further private investment in the region.”

“Congratulations to the Spokane Tribe of Indians on this $1.8 million infrastructure grant,” said Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05). “This Opportunity Zone project, made possible by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act which I supported in Congress, will improve infrastructure, create hundreds of jobs, and spur millions in private investment. Thank you to the Trump administration for rebuilding our aging infrastructure and supporting our communities in Eastern Washington.”

The funding announced today goes to one of Washington’s 139 Opportunity Zones. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Opportunity Zones are spurring economic development in economically-distressed communities nationwide. In June 2019, EDA added Opportunity Zones as an Investment Priority, which increases the number of catalytic Opportunity Zone-related projects that EDA can fund to fuel greater public investment in these areas. To learn more about the Commerce Department’s work in Opportunity Zones, please visit EDA’s Opportunity Zones webpage. To learn more about the Opportunity Zone program, see the Opportunity Now resources webpage. To learn more about Opportunity Zone best practices, see the recently released White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council Report (PDF) to President Trump.

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 makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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