Minnesota Economic Development Fund awarded $1.4 millionA grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) will create over 200 jobs and generate over $4.3 million in new private investment in northeast Minnesota, Congressman Jim Oberstar announced.
A grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) will create over 200 jobs and generate over $4.3 million in new private investment in northeast Minnesota, Congressman Jim Oberstar announced. The EDA grant of $1.4 million will be combined with $772,000 in local matching funds to create a revolving loan fund of nearly $2.2 million to stimulate business development and create jobs in northeast Minnesota.
“This is a sound investment in our economy; EDA estimates show that every federal dollar invested will return $3 in private sector growth,” said Oberstar.
The Arrowhead Regional Development Commission and the Northspan Group of Duluth asked for Oberstar’s help with the grant application in spring 2009, when it became apparent that Duluth’s aviation manufacturing industry needed access to operating capital.
“Duluth’s aviation industry is a prime example of how new ideas can create jobs and economic growth,” said Oberstar. “This fund will ensure that companies and entrepreneurs have the ability to create jobs.”
The following coalition of Northeast Minnesota counties and economic development agencies committed matching funds to the revolving loan fund: Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board, $300,000; Duluth 1200 Fund Inc., $200,000; St. Louis County, $100,000; Two Harbors Development Commission, $100,000; Carlton County, $50,000; Lake County, $10,000; Aitkin County, $10,000; and Koochiching County, $2,000.
The announcement marks the third investment of federal grant money into northeast Minnesota economic development projects. In August, the Northland Foundation in Duluth received $2 million from the U.S. Treasury Department’s Community Development Financial Institution Fund, the Northeast Minnesota Entrepreneur Fund received a $750,000 grant from that same program.
“That is a total of almost $5 million in federal and local funding to help stimulate our economy,” said Oberstar. “Ensuring that businesses have access to capital to start up and operate is the key to getting our economy back on track.”