WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding 5.5 million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to help the state of Texas prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.

“President Biden remains steadfast in his support of small businesses as they build back better from the coronavirus pandemic,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “These EDA investments will provide critical gap financing that entrepreneurs need to grow businesses, as well as provide broadband services to support job growth through business creation and expansion.”

“The Economic Development Administration is committed to helping communities across the nation implement strategies to mitigate economic hardships brought on by the coronavirus pandemic,” said Dennis Alvord, Acting Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “These EDA investments will support the capital needs of businesses in southern Texas and provide faster, more reliable internet service for hundreds of businesses in Monahans.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unique challenges for Texas’ small business community – but Texans are resilient, and our small businesses are powering our state’s economic recovery,” said Governor Greg Abbott. “It is imperative that our small businesses and entrepreneurs have the support that they need to prosper, and I thank the Economic Development Administration for investing in the recovery and success of our small business community in South Texas. This recovery assistance will provide greater financial support to businesses and help us expand broadband access in these communities.”

“While Texans persevere as COVID-19 wreaks havoc on our state, we must take steps to ensure that our communities are equipped to weather the storm,” said Senator John Cornyn. “I applaud this announcement and will continue to do everything I can to make economic growth across Texas a high priority.”

“Small, family-owned businesses are among the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Now more than ever, I am committed to ensuring that small businesses, which are the engines of the American economy, have access to the capital they need to succeed,” said Congressman Filemon Vela (TX-34). “I am proud to see legislation I voted in favor of will directly benefit my community in the amount of 2 million. Additionally, today’s EDA investment announcement for the Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation will lead to the creation of one thousand jobs. I look forward to continuing to support my community as we fight to overcome this deadly pandemic.”

“These added federal resources will help People Fund to do what it does best—empowering people and enabling small businesses to grow,” said Congressman Lloyd Doggett (TX-35). “This is how with a new progressive Administration we are building back better.”

“As our region continues to recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we cannot be more proud of enhancing our partnership with the U.S. Department of Commerce in providing our entrepreneurs access to capital to continue recovering, innovating, and boost the resilience to economic volatility,” said the Executive Director for the BCIC. “We thank all of our partners that continue working diligently to address such foundational challenges prevalent in our region, such as access to capital. The recent announcement of 2M is a great first step towards accomplishing our objective of fortifying and diversifying our state’s economy.

The EDA investments announced today are:

Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation (BCIC), Brownsville, Texas, will receive a $2 million EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to capitalize and administer a Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) to provide critical gap financing to small businesses and entrepreneurs adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic in Cameron County. This project, to be matched with 500,000 in local funds, is expected to retain 2,500 jobs and create 1,000 jobs.

PeopleFund, Austin, Texas, will receive a 2 million EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to capitalize and administer a Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) to provide critical gap financing to small businesses and entrepreneurs adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic in Atascosa, Bastrop, Blanco, Burnet, Comal, Dimmit, Frio, Guadalupe, Hardin, Hays, Jasper, Jefferson, Karnes, Kendall, Kinney, Llano, La Salle, Maverick, Medina, McMullen, Newton, Orange, Polk, San Jacinto, Travis, Trinity, Tyler, Uvalde, Val Verde, Williamson, Wilson, and Zavala counties. This project, to be matched with 500,000 in local funds, is expected to retain 200 jobs and create 100 jobs.

Monahans Economic Development Corporation, Monahans, Texas, will receive a 1.5 million EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to provide high-speed, fiber-based internet service to areas of industrial and commercial development. The project, to be matched with 375,000 in local funds, is expected to retain 1,200 jobs.

These projects are funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136), which provided EDA with 1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) program, provides a wide range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov) The U.S. Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) mission is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation’s regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

For more information on the upcoming revolving loan fund, or how the BCIC is advancing an open and inclusive ecosystem for all entrepreneurs please contact Nathan Burkhart, Director of Marketing and Small Business Development at nburkhart@bcic.us or by phone at 956-382-7500.