Northern Border Regional Commission, announcing availability of grant funds:
The Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC), a federal-state partnership for economic and infrastructure development, has announced the availability of grant funds for projects in Essex, Orleans, Caledonia, Lamoille, Franklin, and Grand Isle counties in Vermont. The Commission seeks applications from public bodies or non-profit organizations for projects that will help achieve Vermont’s statewide economic and community development priorities, as well as the goals of the recently adopted Northern Vermont Economic Development District and NBRC strategic plans.
Information sessions for interested applicants will be held on:
Friday, March 10 from 9:00 – 11:30 a.m. at the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development, 1 National Life Drive, Davis Building, 6th Floor, Montpelier
Monday, March 13 from 9:00 – 11:30 a.m. at the Northeastern Vermont Development Association, 36 Eastern Avenue, St. Johnsbury
Tuesday, March 14 from 9:00 – 11:30 a.m. at the Green Mountain Technology and Career Center, Community Education Room, 738 Route 15 West, Hyde Park
Thursday, March 16 from 9:00 – 11:30 a.m. at the Swanton Village offices, 120 First St., Swanton
Grant proposals to the Northern Border Regional Commission can be for any of the following purposes: transportation, telecommunication, or basic public infrastructure; workforce development; entrepreneurship, technology, or business development; resource conservation, tourism and recreation; or renewable energy development. In the counties of Essex, Orleans, and Caledonia, projects for basic health care and other public services are also eligible. Staff from the Northern Border Regional Commission and the Vermont Department of Economic Development will provide an overview of the NBRC grant opportunity, laying out the application process, timeline, and selection criteria.
The information sessions are being co-hosted by Northeastern Vermont Development Association, the Northeast Kingdom Collaborative, Lamoille Economic Development Corporation, Lamoille County Planning Commission, Franklin County Industrial Development Corporation, Northwest Regional Planning Commission, and Lake Champlain Islands Economic Development Corporation, as well as by the Offices of Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders, and Congressman Peter Welch, who together made these grants possible. Representatives from USDA Rural Development and the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development will also be on hand to share information about related programs.
Applications for grants will be available on March 1 at www.nbrc.gov, with letters of intent due on April 30th and final applications due June 2nd. In 2016, the Northern Border Regional Commission awarded $1.8 million in grants for 14 projects across northern Vermont, including for telecommunications infrastructure in Craftsbury, manufacturing training for workforce development in Franklin County, business assistance for dairies transitioning to organic certification, and assistance with conversion from fossil fuel to advanced wood heating systems, among many other projects.
Created by the US Congress in 2008, the Northern Border Regional Commission is a federal-state partnership whose mission is to help alleviate economic distress and encourage private sector job creation throughout the northern counties of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York. Since 2010, the commission has awarded 119 grants amounting to more than $21 million across the four states, leveraging more than $76 million in matching funds in the process. In Vermont, 33 projects have been funded over the past seven years, with over $5.4 million invested.