$170,400 in Grants for Rural Business Development
The Grenada County Economic Development District has received a $170,400 in Rural Business Development (RBG) grants from the United States Department of Agriculture. The grants will be used to support the growth of small manufacturing operations in Grenada.
Darrell Robinson, the President of the Grenada County Board of Supervisors, said, “Anytime that we as a county can help our industry partners grow, we are going to do our best to do it.”
“Grenada has several small to mid-sized manufacturing operations that employ hundreds of citizens from Grenada and the surrounding area,” stated Harrison, President of the Greater Grenada Partnership, “and we are constantly seeking ways to promote these sectors. One way we are able to do this is by seeking grant opportunities to help a business take the next step in its growth.”
According to the USDA, the RBD program is a competitive grant designed to support targeted technical assistance, training and other activities leading to the development or expansion of small and emerging private businesses in rural areas which will employ 50 or fewer new employees and has less than $1 million in gross revenue.
“This is a great program for our local small businesses to take advantage of and it may enable their businesses to have an opportunity to grow and be competitive in today’s ever-changing environment,” stated Chris Hathcock, Secretary-Treasurer for the GPP and the Chamber of Commerce.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, 99.7% of the employers in the US are small businesses and 95% of these have less than 50 employees. These same small businesses create an estimated 64% of new job growth nationwide.
Harrison stated, “it is always a good business decision for a community to support its local manufacturers, the mom and pop shops and new emerging industries.”
Economic data based on the Grenada region show that over 30% of the employment in the area is manufacturing and over 50% is within the small business sectors. These sectors are forecasted to continue to grow over the next five years.
Brad Bransome, Vice President of the GGP and Chamber of Commerce voiced his excitement, “What a win for Grenada businesses. Support for our community’s business development is a “non-negotiable”. We must continue to utilize any and all avenues that will provide Grenada businesses the resources they need to achieve their fullest potential.”
The USDA Rural Business Development program was created to provide grants for rural projects that finance and facilitate the development of small and emerging rural businesses, help fund distance learning networks, and help fund employment related adult education programs. To assist with business development, RBDGs may fund a broad array of activities. RBDG funds must be directed for projects benefiting rural areas or towns outside the urbanized periphery of any city with a population of 50,000 or more.