Lewis County Awarded $200,000 for Microenterprise Grant Program

LOWVILLE, NY – The County of Lewis, in partnership with the Lewis County Economic Development/IDA office, were awarded a $200,000 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) to establish a Microenterprise Grant Program for small businesses within Lewis County.

 The grant application, processed through the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA), was announced at the 2018 Regional Council Awards Ceremony on December 19, 2018, where over $64 million was awarded to North Country projects.   

According to the NYS Office of Community Renewal, "the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Economic Development program provides grants to communities that wish to sponsor economic development activities that create or retain jobs for low- and moderate-income persons.  The goal of the program is to fund projects that result in high quality, full-time jobs that are well paying and provide benefits and training to low- and moderate-income persons."

The Lewis County Microenterprise Grant Program, managed by a Program Administrator (Lewis County Economic Development), a Program Advisory Board, and a Grant Committee, will work to facilitate the expansion and retention of microenterprise activity in Lewis County, create and retain employment opportunities, and foster entrepreneurship in the following areas:

  • Agribusiness with a focus on value-added processing
  • Tourism businesses that complement our strengths in outdoor recreation IMG 1074
  • Downtown Revitalization
  • Other small business types

Eligible applicants are:

  • Microenterprises that are a private, for-profit businesses, that are legal, likened and operating consisting of five or fewer employees, including the owners
  • Must be located within Lewis County
  • The business benefits and will make jobs available to low-to-moderate income workers as defined by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Applicants must attend a local entrepreneurial training program

Program details include:

  • Funding assistance will be based on alignment with program objectives, priority, need and quality of plan
  • Grants will range from a minimum of $5,000 to a maximum of 90% of the total project cost, not to exceed $35,000.
  • Eligible uses of funds include but are not limited to: acquisition of real property; financing of machinery, furniture, fixtures and equipment; working capital; inventory; and employee training expenses. Funds may be used for other uses, except construction or improvements where Davis Bacon and Related Acts apply.

The Lewis County Microenterprise Grant program expects to start accepting applications by the end of 2019. 

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