The American Rescue Plan

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Community & Economic



Grant Opportunities

Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC)

  • ARC Project Grants – ROLLING
    • Eligible Activities
      • Business Development and Entrepreneurship – ARC makes a wide range of grants to public and private nonprofit organizations to help firms create and retain jobs in the Region.
      • Education and Training – ARC funds projects that develop, support, or expand education and training programs.
      • Healthcare – ARC health care grants can be made for equipment and demonstration projects, and in special cases for renovation and construction of facilities. 
      • Physical Infrastructure – Basic Infrastructure. ARC provides funds for basic infrastructure services, including water and sewer facilities, that enhance economic development opportunities or address serious health issues for residential customers. Housing. ARC supports projects that stimulate the construction or rehabilitation of housing for low- and moderate-income residents. ARC housing grants fund planning, technical services, and other preliminary expenses of developing housing projects, as well as demolition and necessary site improvements, including excavation, landfills, land clearing and grading; and infrastructure improvements, such as water and sewer system construction.
      • Telecommunications. ARC funds several telecommunications activities, including strategic community planning, equipment acquisition, and hardware and software for network building. 
      • Leadership Development and Civic Capacity – Eligible activities include the development and implementation of community-based strategic plans; training for citizen leaders (both adult and youth leaders), local officials, and management staff from nonprofit community organizations; organizational support for community organizations, and other activities that help build a community’s capacity to mobilize resources, gain leadership experience, and strengthen community institutions and partnerships.
  • Business Development Revolving Loan Fund Grants – ROLLING
    • Business development revolving loan funds (RLFs) are pools of money used by grantees to make loans to create and retain jobs. As loans are repaid, money is returned to the fund and made available for additional loans.
  • Distressed Counties Grants – ROLLING
    • ARC targets special resources to the most economically distressed counties in the Region, using a measure of economic distress based on three economic indicators: three-year average unemployment rates, per capita market income, and poverty rates. 
    • Besides allocating funding to benefit distressed counties, ARC has established other policies to reduce economic distress. ARC normally limits its maximum project funding contribution to 50 percent of costs, but it can increase its funding share to as much as 80 percent in distressed counties.

Golden LEAF Foundation

  • Disaster Recovery Grant Program – ROLLING
    • The State of North Carolina provided funds to the Golden LEAF Foundation to make grants to governmental entities and 501(c)(3) nonprofits to repair or replace infrastructure and equipment damaged or destroyed by Hurricanes Matthew, Florence, Michael, and Dorian.
    • Infrastructure includes nonresidential buildings that serve the public, water, sewer, stormwater, and other publicly owned assets.
  • Open Grants Program – ROLLING
    • The Open Grants Program is designed to make it easier for applicants to submit a proposal to Golden LEAF and to make funding opportunities available throughout the year.
    • This program is for Economic Development projects in the areas of Economic Investment and Job Creation, Workforce Preparedness and Education, Agriculture, and Community Vitality.
  • Economic Catalyst Program – ROLLING
    • Golden LEAF will consider applications to assist eligible state, regional and local economic development entities with grants to support permissible activities in projects in which a company will commit to creating a specific number of full-time jobs in a tobacco-dependent or economically distressed area
    • Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Golden LEAF staff to discuss the potential projects and conditions that may be applied before applying.
    • Competitive applications will include information showing that the expected job creation is AT RISK without Golden LEAF support.
  • Golden LEAF Infrastructure Grants – ROLLING
    • The Golden LEAF Foundation, a North Carolina grant-making organization, will consider applications to assist eligible state, regional and local economic development entities with grants to support permissible activities in projects in which a company will commit to creating a specific number of full-time jobs in a tobacco-dependent or economically distressed area.
    • Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Golden LEAF staff to discuss the potential projects and conditions that may be applied before applying.
    • Applications in this program must be for projects that will lead to job creation by a company that will commit to creating the jobs if Golden LEAF provides a grant for the project.

NC Department of Commerce Grant Opportunities

  • Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) – ROLLING
    • The Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) is a performance-based, discretionary incentive program that provides cash grants directly to a company when the company creates jobs and invests in the state. Grants are awarded only in competitive recruitment or retention situations. JDIG grants hold companies to strict performance targets, but the grants can significantly help offset the cost of locating or expanding a facility in the state.
    • Special Requirements
      • For companies that create 1,750 jobs and invest $500 million in North Carolina, their project is categorized as a High-Yield Project (HYP), allowing a JDIG grant reimbursing up to 90% of the new personal income withholdings, for a period up to 20 years.
      • A JDIG Transformative Project award, for a company that creates 3,000 jobs and invests $1 billion in the state, can provide reimbursements up to 90% of the new personal income withholding for a period of up to 30 years.
  • One North Carolina Fund (OneNC) – ROLLING
    • The One North Carolina Fund (OneNC) is a discretionary cash-grant program that allows the Governor to respond quickly to competitive job-creation projects.
    • One North Carolina awards are allocated to local governments as part of a negotiated challenge grant. By statute, OneNC requires that a local government provide an incentive to match the OneNC funding.
      • In a Tier 1 county, the local government must provide no less than one dollar for every three dollars provided by One NC.
      • In a Tier 2 county, the local government must provide no less than one dollar for every two dollars provided by One NC.
  • Infrastructure – State Rural Grants – ROLLING
    • The Economic Infrastructure Program provides grants to local governments to assist with infrastructure projects that will lead to the creation of new, full-time jobs.
    • Eligible projects include but are not limited to: Upgrades or repair of public drinking water or wastewater treatment plants, Installation or extension of public broadband infrastructure, Upgrades, extensions, or repair of public water or sewer lines
    • Eligible applicants are units of local government with priority given to the counties that have the 80 highest rankings under N.C.G.S.143B-437.08.
    • Contact: Melody Adams, Director Rural Grant Programs
      • Phone:  919-814-4661 (Office)
  • Infrastructure – Federal CDBG Economic Development – ROLLING
    • Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds are available to local municipal or county governments for projects to enhance the vitality of communities by providing decent housing and suitable living environments and expanding economic opportunities. These grants primarily serve persons of low- and moderate- incomes.
    • The economic development component of the CDBG Program is administered by the Rural Economic Development Division within the North Carolina Department of Commerce. CDBG Infrastructure funds are administered by the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality to assist with addressing environmental issues due to aging sewer systems, contaminated drinking water, and improve the quality of life for many citizens across the state because of improved systems. The North Carolina Division of Water Infrastructure provides financial assistance for projects that improve water quality. 
  • Utility Account – ROLLING
    • The Utility Account assists local governments in counties that have one of the 80 most distressed rankings under G.S. 143B-437.08 after adjustments are applied for creating jobs in eligible industries. Funds are provided as incentives for job creation and investment to benefit industries eligible to participate in the Article 3J tax credit program. 
    • Program Requirements: Funds may be used for construction or improvements to water, sewer, gas, telecommunications, high-speed broadband, transportation infrastructure or electrical utility lines and for equipment for existing or proposed industrial buildings. 
    • To be eligible for funding, the infrastructure is required to be on the building site or if not located on the site, directly related to the operation of the specific industrial activity
  • Rail Industrial Access Program – ROLLING
    • Grant recipients may receive a maximum of 50% of total project costs, subject to a $200,000 limit per project. Program funding is an incentive to encourage companies to locate or expand in North Carolina versus another state. Projects considering in-state locations only or those not anticipated to yield a significant economic impact do not qualify for funding.
  • Building Reuse Grants – ROLLING
    • The Building Reuse Program, under the Rural Economic Development Division at Commerce, provides grants to local governments to help renovate older buildings into attractive business locations.
    • Eligibility requirements differ by program, but in general – these grants go to units of local government located in either a Tier 1 or Tier 2 county, or a rural census tract in a Tier 3 county.
    • In Tier 1 or Tier 2 counties, priority will be given to towns or communities with populations less than 5,000.
    • Contact: Hazel Edmond, Building Reuse Program, State Rural Grants
      • Phone: (919) 814-4659 (Office)
  • Demolition Grants – ROLLING
    • Does your community have a promising industrial site, but it’s being held back due to an old, unsuitable or dilapidated building on the property? Demolition Grants support the demolition of a vacant building to encourage site rehabilitation and site availability for economic development purposes
    • Funding is available through the Rural Grants Program and the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s Small Cities Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. 
    • Contact: Hazel Edmond, Building Reuse Program, State Rural Grants
      • Phone: (919) 814-4659 (Office)
  • Shell Buildings – ROLLING
    • Loans for industrial shell buildings are available from the Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) based on the projected number of jobs to be created and the level of distress in the community.
  • Agriculture Sites – Gas Products Fund – ROLLING
    • The Expanded Gas Products Service to Agriculture Fund provides grants to allow the owner of a project that would facilitate new and expanded natural gas and propane gas service, or that would expand agricultural production or processing capabilities, to pay for excess infrastructure costs, or to pay for cost effective alternatives that would reduce excess infrastructure costs.
  • Program Enhancement Grants – ROLLING
    • Local Workforce Development Boards in North Carolina can support the workforce needs of businesses or specific groups in their regions with a Program Enhancement Grant from N.C. Commerce’s Division of Workforce Solutions.  Awards up to $200,000 are available.
    • The grants can be used to support or sponsor innovative approaches to workforce development. Also, the Division of Workforce Solutions may award Planning Grants of up to $30,000 to support the development of Program Enhancement Grant applications.
  • Neighborhood Revitalization – Federal CDBG
    • The North Carolina Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NC Neighborhood) will offer a non-entitlement municipality or county the opportunity to tailor a project to meet the community development needs specific and most critical to their locality, primarily for their low- and moderate-income residents.
    • The NC Neighborhood Program incorporates several previous Rural Economic Development Division (REDD) Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) programs and activities such as Scattered Site Housing and Supportive Housing.
    • The NC Neighborhood Program will support the three livability principles that help guide sustainability and resiliency throughout areas that receive funding.
      • Promote equitable, affordable housing.
      • Support existing communities.
      • Value communities and neighborhoods.
  • North Carolina Biotechnology Center
    • As the first state-sponsored biotechnology initiative in the U.S., the North Carolina Biotechnology Center supports companies engaged in biotechnology.  The organization backs industry research, business development, and education initiatives and helps develop and advocate for strategic policy goals.
    • NCBiotech offers several funding programs designed to fill gaps in technology development and company growth.
      • Company Funding – provides $75,000 to $500,000 to innovative North Carolina life science companies.
      • University Technology Development Funding – distributes grants to N.C. universities to advance great innovations with compelling commercial potential.
      • Event and Meeting Grants – provide grants to help N.C.’s non-profit organizations stage professional conferences, workshops or similar events across the state.
  • Film Industry Grants – ROLLING
    • North Carolina offers producers financial rebates of up to 25% on qualified expenses.
    • For a television series, grant awards shall not exceed $12 million per season;
    • For a feature-length film (including made-for-television movies), awards cannot exceed $7 million;
    • For a commercial, awards cannot exceed $250,000.

North Carolina Department Environmental Quality (DEQ)

  • Nonpoint Source 319 Grants – DEADLINE MAY
    • Funds may be used to conduct watershed restoration projects such as stormwater and agricultural best management practices and restoration of impaired streams.
    • Section 319 grant projects must be used to help restore waterbodies currently impaired by nonpoint source pollution in areas with approved watershed restoration plans
    • Grant Schedule
      • Late January: Request for Proposals released
      • Early May: 319 Grant Application deadline
      • Early June: Applicants notified whether they will be invited for in-person interviews
      • Late June: Notified applicants interviewed in Raleigh; selected projects announced
      • January of the following year: Projects may start (estimated, depending on grant award date to NCDEQ and time for contract preparation)
  • Water Resources Development Grant Program – DEADLINE DECEMBER
    • This program is designed to provide cost-share grants and technical assistance to local governments throughout the State.
    • Applications for grants are accepted for seven purposes: General Navigation, Recreational Navigation, Water Management, Stream Restoration, Beach Protection, Land Acquisition and Facility Development for Water-Based Recreation, and Aquatic Weed Control.
    • There is no grant application cycle deadline for navigation projects. There are two grant application cycles per fiscal year for state and local projects. The current fall 2019 grant cycle began July 1 and applications are due by Dec. 31.
  • 205(j) WQ Management Planning Grant – DEADLINE SEPTEMBER
    • Through Section 205(j) Grant program, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency provides states with funding to do water quality planning.
    • These projects can involve identifying the nature, extent, and cause of water quality problems or doing planning work to address those problems. Projects can include but are not limited to the development of EPA 9-Element Watershed Restoration Plans for a 12-digit or smaller USGS HUC, mapping stormwater infrastructure, conducting engineering designs for stormwater best management practices, and watershed assessments of pollutant sources.
    • 205(j) grants are eligible to regional Councils of Government; COGs may partner with any public sector organization to implement projects.
  • Clean Water Management Trust Fund – FEBRUARY 3
    • We award grants to non-profit and governmental organizations to protect land for natural, historical and cultural benefit, limit encroachment on military installations, restore degraded streams, and develop and improve stormwater treatment technology.  
    • Grant Programs
      • Land Acquisition
        • The Land Acquisition Program includes the acquisition of land in fee or conservation easements for the following purposes:
          • protecting and conserving riparian buffers
          • protecting and conserving surface waters and enhancing drinking water supplies, including the development of water supply reservoirs
          • conserving land that represents the ecological diversity of NC
          • preserving land that contributes to the development of a balanced State program of historic properties
      • Stream Restoration
        • CWMTF funds restoration projects to enhance or restore degraded waters and to protect downstream natural resources such as drinking water supplies, fisheries, and recreation opportunities. 
      • Innovative Stormwater
        • CWMTF can consider funding innovative stormwater projects that demonstrate a novel and untried method to water quality at the project site and how it would contribute to achieving CWMTF’s goal of advancing stormwater-management practices for water quality.
      • Planning
        • CWMTF may fund planning efforts that develop potential projects that: (1) enhance or restore degraded waters, (2) protect unpolluted waters, (3) contribute toward a network of riparian buffers and greenways for environmental, educational, and recreational benefits, (4) provide buffers around military bases to protect the military mission, (5) acquire land that represents the ecological diversity of North Carolina, (6) acquire land that contributes to the development of a balanced State program of historic properties, or (7) facilitate innovative efforts to improve stormwater treatment.
      • Donated Property Mini-grants
        • Donated Property Mini-grants provide up to $25,000 or the value of the conservation donation, whichever is less, to pay transaction costs associated with the donation of property in fee simple, or a permanent conservation agreement.
  • Regional Recycling Infrastructure Grant Program – ROLLING
    • Grant funding is available to develop new infrastructure or upgrade a material recovery facility (MRF) or recycling transfer station that will serve more than one local government residential recycling program across multiple counties.
  • 2020 Recycling Business Development Grant Round – DEADLINE NOVEMBER
    • The purpose of this grant program is to reduce the flow of solid waste to disposal facilities and encourage the sustainable recovery of materials from North Carolina’s waste stream. To achieve that purpose, RBAC seeks viable, well-planned and effective proposals from recycling businesses in North Carolina wanting to start up or expand recovery efforts.
    • Projects involving the collection, processing or end-use of materials in the solid waste stream are eligible for funding.
  • Abandoned Manufactured Home (AMH) Grant Program – DEADLINE DECEMBER
    • A limited amount of grant funding is available to assist North Carolina counties with implementing and operating AMH Clean-up Programs.
  • Community Waste Reduction and Recycling (CWRAR) Grant Program – DEADLINE FEBRUARY 20, 2020
    • This recurring annual grant program provides funding to public recycling programs for projects that help communities build lasting capacity to divert materials from the waste stream and/or increase public awareness of recycling.