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

Grants to Maine Local Governments to Support Capital
Projects and Building Improvements for Micro-Businesses

Agency Type:

State

Funding Source:

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Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD)

LOI Date:

02/07/20

Deadline Date:

04/24/20 4:00 PM Receipt

Description:

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Grants to Maine local municipal governments in eligible regions to support capital projects and building improvements for qualifying businesses. Applicants must submit a letter of intent prior to submitting a full application. Funding is intended for renovations, fa├žade improvements, and planning activities. The grant program supports projects that benefit micro-enterprise businesses. All local government units in Maine may apply, 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.

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, 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. Multi-jurisdictional applications from two or more communities must designate a lead community. 

Applicants may apply to obtain funding to assist for-profit businesses and for eligible planning activities necessary to complete the Project Development Phase. 

The Project Development Phase may include any and/or all of the following:

  • Project Planning: Details of the project including pre-engineering, inspections, cost analysis, feasibility, and/or market studies.
  • Management Plan: Details of the structure and methods established by the community for program management.
  • Regulations: Project Development Phase applications will be reviewed for compliance with State and Federal regulations.
  • Project Eligibility: Verification that proposed activities are eligible under The Act.
  • Project Benefit: Verification that proposed activities meet one of the CDBG Program National Objectives.
  • Environmental Review: Review of project for compliance with State and Federal Environmental Regulations. (View related documents)

Micro-enterprise grants will be structured as forgivable loans.

Communities must provide a narrative description of the Impact, Development Strategy and Citizen Participation relating to the Micro-Enterprise Assistance activity proposed in the application.

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

  • Benefit 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 Size of Grant:

Maximum MEA Grant Amount: $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, 2020.

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.

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.

Pre-Application Information:

All communities wishing to submit an MEA application must submit a Letter of Intent and Verification of CDBG National Objective to OCD. After review for completeness and eligibility, units of general local governments will be invited to make a full application.

Letters of Intent are due Friday February 21, 2020 by 4:00 p.m.

All applications must be received at the physical location of the Office of Community Development by 4:00 P.M., Friday, April 24, 2020.

More on the Program: https://www.maine.gov/decd/community-development/cdbg-program/grant-categories/microenterprise-assistance-program

Project Development: https://www.maine.gov/decd/community-development/cdbg-program/forms

Eligibility: https://www.maine.gov/decd/community-development/cdbg-program/eligibility

Forms: https://www.maine.gov/decd/community-development/cdbg-program/forms-materials

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: ocd.loi@maine.gov

Applications (by invitation only) must be received at the:

Office of Community Development
111 Sewall Street, 3rd Floor
59 State House Station
Augusta, Maine 04333-0059
Phone: (207) 624-9819
Fax: (207) 287-8070

Technical Assistance Contacts: https://www.maine.gov/decd/community-development/cdbg-program/assistance

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

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

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