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Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program - Micro-Enterprise Assistance (MEA)

Grants to Maine Local Governments for Loans and Grants to
Microbusinesses for Capital and Facade Improvements

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD)

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

04/27/18 4:00 PM Receipt


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Grants to Maine local municipal governments (excluding entitlement communities) for grants and loans to support microbusinesses for renovations, façade improvements, and planning activities. Applicants must be pre-approved before submitting the Intent to Apply, which is due by February 9, 2018.

The Micro-Enterprise Assistance Grant (MEA) Program provides grant funds to assist in innovative solutions to problems faced by micro-enterprise businesses. Assistance to businesses may be in the form of grants or loans at the discretion of the community.

Eligible activities under the Micro-Enterprise Assistance category are grants or loans to for-profit businesses that can be used for working capital and interior renovations, façade grants or loans for exterior improvements, including signage, painting, siding, awnings, lighting, display windows and other approved improvements; and eligible planning activities necessary to complete the Project Development Phase. Sewer, water, storm drainage, parking, roads or streets and other infrastructure improvements and buildings solely for residential use are not eligible.

Micro-Enterprise Assistance Loan Repayments – Communities that establish Micro-Enterprise Assistance as loans, and anticipate receiving $35,000 or more in loan repayments, must utilize the services of a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) or a Community Based Development Organization (CBDO) as defined in Section 105(a)(15) of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, to manage repayments and subsequent relending. Micro-Enterprise Assistance Grants will be structured as forgivable loans.

All CDBG funded activities must meet one of three National Objectives of the program. These objectives are:

- Benefit to low and moderate income persons;
- Prevention and elimination of slum and blight conditions; and
- Meeting community development needs having a particular urgency.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 167239

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Maximum MEA Grant Amount per Community per year: $150,000
Maximum Amount of Micro-Enterprise Assistance to an individual Business: $50,000

Term of Contract:

Funds will not be available until after July 1, 2018.

Applicants have three months to complete the project development phase process or notice of award may be rescinded.

OCD may terminate a community’s grant if progress on the project is not apparent within 6 months from the date of contract signing.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

All units of general local government in Maine, including plantations, except for the entitlement communities of Auburn, Bangor, Biddeford, Lewiston, Portland and all of Cumberland County with the exception of Brunswick, Casco and Frye Island are eligible to apply for and receive State CDBG program funds.

County governments may apply on behalf of the Unorganized Territory. Groups of local governments may apply for multi-jurisdictional or joint projects. Multi-jurisdictional applications require designation of one local government as the lead applicant and consent for that designation by each participating local government.

Counties may apply for the Economic Development or Public Service programs on behalf of a collaboration of communities.

All MEA applicants must meet the past performance criteria contained in the 2018 Program
Statement on page 8, Section 1 (H) (2) (f).

Eligible applicants, including counties as defined above may apply for CDBG assistance on behalf of the five Maine Indian Tribes. Maine Indian Tribes are not themselves eligible applicants.

Sewer, water, storm drainage, parking, roads or streets and other infrastructure improvements are not eligible.

Pre-Application Information:

Please take note that eligible applicants for MEA funding are limited to those communities receiving prior written OCD approval of their Letter of Intent to Apply. Applicants submitting a MEA application without OCD approval of their Letter of Intent will not be scored.

Letter of Intent to Apply: Due at DECD on or before 4:00 p.m. Friday, February 9, 2018.

All applications must be received at the physical location of the Office of Community Development by 4:00 PM on Friday, April 27, 2018.

Application process:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Letters of Intent may be submitted via email to:

Applications must be received at the:

Office of Community Development
Department of Economic and Community Development
59 State House Station
111 Sewall Street, 3rd Floor
Augusta, Maine 04333-0059

For further information:
Ph: (207) 624-9819
Fax: (207) 287-8070

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Maine: All communities, excluding the entitlement communities of: Auburn, Bangor, Biddeford, Lewiston, Portland and all of Cumberland County with the exception of Brunswick, Casco and Frye Island