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Local Economic Assistance and Development Support (LEADS) Program

Grants to New Mexico Nonprofits, Tribal Entities, and
Agencies for Business and Economic Development Projects

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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New Mexico Economic Development Department (NMEDD)

Deadline Date:

06/04/21 5:00 PM


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Grants of up to $25,000 to New Mexico nonprofit organizations, tribal entities, and government agencies for business and economic development projects. Applicants must contact the funding source and attend a conference prior to submitting an application. Funding is intended to support projects that develop the tax base, encourage business development, and retain or expand the number of jobs in economic-base businesses.

Through the Local Economic Assistance and Development Support program (LEADS), the New Mexico Economic Development Department (NMEDD) encourages and supports New Mexico communities in their efforts to create new jobs. The program emphasizes the importance of recruitment, as well as retention/expansion and start-up activities. The initiative recognizes that the character and needs of each community will determine how these activities might be used to create new jobs. 

Program Objectives

The funding provided through LEADS is intended to create wealth in New Mexico through job creation, development of the tax base, and to provide incentives for business development. Every LEADS application will be evaluated based on these objectives.

Recruitment, retention and expansion, or creation of jobs in economic-base businesses.

Economic-base businesses bringing new money into the local economy from outside of the area - generally considered to be out of state. In rural communities that have included retail activity in their economic development plan, retail may be considered as an economic-base activity in that it brings new money into the community or that it prevents leakage outside of the area. (example: tourist targeted shops on Main Street in a small village bring new money into the community).

Develop the tax base.

More jobs in a community leads to more revenue for the community as employees spend money in local businesses. The businesses and the employees pay property and sales taxes. This will result in more money to enhance government-funded community services that contribute to the quality of life— everything from libraries to roads.

Encourage Business Development

Most jobs and investment come from expanding an existing business, but every business starts small – sometimes as just one person with an idea. Business growth involves providing advice, support, and resources to enable new businesses to start up; small businesses to grow; medium businesses to expand; large businesses to diversify; and all businesses to succeed. Incubators, business accelerators, and shared work-spaces help business get off the ground. Programs that provide network development, technology assistance, training and marketing are used to encourage business development.

For more information on eligible projects, see the following link:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 171459

Estimated Size of Grant:

Projects may be awarded up to $25,000 per year.

Term of Contract:

Projects must be completed by June 17, 2022.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Entities that may apply to participate in LEADS:
• Are part of an economic development effort that includes both public and private participation and can demonstrate their capacity to facilitate economic growth.
• Have an up to date community economic development plan and a marketing plan that supports business development and job growth.
• The Local Economic Development Act, and, ideally, a Local Option Gross Receipts tax for economic development or other economic development financing tools have been adopted in your service area.

Organizational status of applicants:
• Incorporated municipalities and counties, to include Native American tribal entities, are eligible to apply for LEADS.
• Community stakeholder organizations may apply for LEADS if the organization is physically located, operates, and is incorporated under the New Mexico Not-for-Profit Corporation Law and has been providing relevant economic development service to the community for at least one year prior to application. (i.e. Economic Development Organization, Chamber of Commerce, workforce organization, or business association.)
• All applicants must be auditable and eligible to receive state funding.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Please join NMEDD on May 21 for an FY22 LEADS kick-off webinar from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

The webinar will provide an overview of the LEADS program, application process and timeline, as well as an introduction to the new online application. LEADS applicants will be required to meet with their regional representative for a pre-application consultation and attend or view the webinar to apply for funding.

Click here to register for the webinar:

Pre-Application Information:

- May 21, 2021: LEADS FY22 Kick-Off Webinar, 10:00-11:00am—attendance required for all applicants.
- May 21, 2021: Online applications open—Applicants will receive link to online application following Webinar.
- June 4, 2021, 5:00 pm.: Online Applications due
- June 7, 2021 : PowerPoint Presentations for LEADS presentations due to Regional Reps.
- June 9-10, 2021: Project Presentations (virtual). SBDC representatives will serve on the review committee.
- June 15, 2021: Funding recommendations will be submitted to EDD Cabinet Secretary for consideration and final decision.
- Week of June 21: Notices of award or denial, grant agreements and award packets will be sent out via the Regional Reps.
- June 17, 2022: Awarded projects must be completed—final invoices and end of year reports due.

Communities and non-profit organizations interested in applying for LEADS funding must contact the Community, Business and Rural Development Team and schedule a pre-application meeting with your Regional Representative to review the process and discuss the proposed project. Applications will only be accepted from applicants who have received reauthorization from an NMEDD representative and have attended or viewed the LEADS informational webinar.

All applicants will be notified by their respective Regional Representatives of the final award decisions.

Contact Information:

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

The link to the online application for Local Economic Assistance and Development Support will be delivered electronically to applicants after the pre-application meeting and webinar have occurred.

Contact information for the Regional Representatives may be found here:

New Mexico
Economic Development Department
Joseph M. Montoya Building
1100 S. St. Francis Drive
Santa Fe, NM 87505-4147

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: New Mexico

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