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The Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC), a federal-state partnership for economic and infrastructure development, has announced the availability of grant funds for projects in Essex, Orleans, Caledonia, Lamoille, Franklin, and Grand Isle counties in Vermont. The Commission seeks applications from public bodies or non-profit organizations for projects that will help achieve Vermont’s statewide economic and community development priorities, as well as the goals of the recently adopted Northern Vermont Economic Development District and NBRC strategic plans.
Information sessions for interested applicants will be held on:
Grant proposals to the Northern Border Regional Commission can be for any of the following purposes: transportation, telecommunication, or basic public infrastructure; workforce development; entrepreneurship, technology, or business development; resource conservation, tourism and recreation; or renewable energy development. In the counties of Essex, Orleans, and Caledonia, projects for basic health care and other public services are also eligible.
Staff from NBRC and the Vermont Department of Economic Development will summarize the NBRC grant opportunity, laying out the application process, timeline, and selection criteria.
The information sessions are being co-hosted by Northeastern Vermont Development Association, the Northeast Kingdom Collaborative, Lamoille Economic Development Corporation, Lamoille County Planning Commission, Franklin County Industrial Development Corporation, Northwest Regional Planning Commission, and Lake Champlain Islands Economic Development Corporation, as well as by the offices of Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders, and Congressman Peter Welch, who together made these grants possible. Representatives from USDA Rural Development and the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development will also be on hand to share information about related programs.
Applications for grants will be available on March 1 at www.nbrc.gov, with letters of intent due on April 30 and final applications due June 2. In 2016, the Northern Border Regional Commission awarded $1.8 million in grants for 14 projects across northern Vermont, including for telecommunications infrastructure in Craftsbury, manufacturing training for workforce development in Franklin County, business assistance for dairies transitioning to organic certification, and assistance with conversion from fossil fuel to advanced wood heating systems, among many other projects.
For more information, contact Jared Duval, Economic Development Director and VT NBRC Program Manager, Agency of Commerce and Community Development, at 802-272-2461 or Jared.Duval@Vermont.gov.