Leahy Announces Statewide Expansion of Economic Development Effort

. . . $25 million Available to VT, NH, NY and ME in 2019 for Projects

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. (THURSDAY, February 21, 2019) – During a Thursday event at the Middlebury Town Offices, U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced that all communities in Vermont are now eligible to apply for funding from the Northern Border Regional Commission’s (NBRC) grant programs.  The NBRC is a federal-state partnership with a mission to help alleviate economic distress and encourage private-sector job creation throughout portions of Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire and New York.  Leahy included legislation in the 2018 Farm Bill to make communities in the entire state of Vermont eligible, expanding the important grant program that previously only covered the northernmost six counties in the state.

Leahy said:  “Vermont communities share many of the same economic strengths and challenges. By ensuring every corner of our state is part of the Commission’s territory, we make it possible for them to use common strategies to improve our local and regional economies. Whether expanding the outdoor recreation economy, creating new co-working spaces or investing in infrastructure I am confident Vermonters will put these funds to good use.”

In his role as Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Leahy secured $25 million in funding to assist communities in the Commission territory during the 2019 federal fiscal year.  The resources includes $20 million in core NBRC funding, a $3 million partnership with the U.S. Economic Development Administration and a $2 million partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The NBRC was created in the 2008 Farm Bill through the advocacy of Senator Leahy and his congressional colleagues in Northern New England and New York.  Since 2010, Vermont organizations have received more than $10.6 million to spur economic development and job growth in Vermont’s six northern-most counties. 

The Farm Bill reauthorizes the NBRC for five more years and includes administrative changes that will promote efficiency and expands the NBRC’s work to all fourteen counties in Vermont.  The reauthorization also establishes a capacity building grant to help states better support business retention and expansion, encourage job creation and workforce development, expand access to high-speed broadband and encourage initiatives that drive investments in transportation and other infrastructure. 

Eligible applicants include public or non-profit entities,  Applications for grant funding can focus on projects in any of the following program areas: transportation infrastructure; public infrastructure; telecommunications infrastructure; workforce development; entrepreneurship and businesses and technology development; resources and open space conservation, tourism and recreation; and renewable and alternative energy.

Interested applicants are encouraged to submit a Letter of Notification to Apply by March 29, 2019, so that State Program Managers and Local Development Districts are aware of your project and can assist you better through the process.

Applications will be available March 8, 2019 on the NBRC’s website (www.nbrc.gov).  The Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development is offering the following informational sessions to assist applicants:    




March 8, 2019


Milton Municipal Building Community Room, 43 Bombardier Road, Milton Vermont

March 14, 2019


Rutland Economic Development Corporation 3rd floor classroom - 67 Merchants Row Rutland, VT  05701

March 14, 2019


7 The Square Bellows Falls, VT 05101 (Look for the Bellows Falls Opera House Marquee)

March 15, 2019


Green Mountain Technology & Career Center 738 Route 15 West Hyde Park, VT 05655

March 18, 2019


Randolph Town Hall, 7 Summer Street, Randolph VT Conference Room B

March 20, 2019


Central Vermont Chamber of Commerce, 33 Stewart Road Berlin, VT 05641

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