Economic Recovery Resources - Biweekly Update
The Houston-Galveston Area Council and the Gulf Coast Economic Development District issue this Economic Recovery Resources Biweekly Update to help our local partners secure the resources they need to recover from economic disruption. Subscribers to the monthly Regional Economic Development Digest will receive the update automatically.

Please email Jillian Donatto or call 631-897-3817 to discuss economic recovery needs you may have.
News and Updates
Coronavirus State and Local Relief Funding Interim Final Rule, Local Allocations Released by U.S. Treasury
Through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), metropolitan cities, counties, and states are entitled to a federal grant from Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds through the U.S. Treasury. Jurisdictions eligible to receive funding directly from Treasury can now submit a request for funding. Local governments that are deemed non-entitlement entities will receive the funds through the state government—further guidance on distributions to non-entitlement units will be announced in the coming days. Learn more
The U.S. Treasury released the Interim Final Rule which clarifies that the funds may be used for 6 general purposes:  
  • Address public health needs related to the pandemic 
  • Address negative economic impacts caused by the pandemic 
  • Serve the hardest-hit communities and families 
  • Replace lost public sector revenue  
  • Provide premium pay to essential workers and  
  • Invest in water, sewer, and broadband infrastructure 
Fort Bend County Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program 
The Fort Bend County Commissioners Court approved a small business emergency grant program to assist Fort Bend County businesses impacted by COVID-19. Grant applications will remain open until funds are exhausted. Grants are available between $5,000 and $25,000—eligibility is based on annual revenue in 2019. Learn more
Current Small Business Administration Programs for COVID-19 Relief  
  • Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is accepting applications. Details on requirements, eligibility, and a program guide are available in English at or in Spanish at
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) – Small business owners, including agricultural businesses, and nonprofit organizations can apply for EIDL until December 31, 2021.  
  • Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) – The SBA is offering PPP loans until May 31, 2021. For business that have not received a PPP loan, First Draw PPP loans are available. Certain businesses are eligible for a Second Draw PPP loan. Borrowers may also be eligible for PPP loan forgiveness. 
  • Shuttered Venue Operators Grants (SVOG) – Eligible applicants may qualify for SVOG equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with a $10 million maximum for a single grant award. Funds may be used for payroll expenses, rent, taxes, and worker protection expenditures, among other allowable costs.   
  • Cross-Program Eligibility – The Small Business Administration has put together a chart depicting which applicants can apply for one or more of the available COVID-19 relief programs. 
Hazard Mitigation Grant Program Application Period Open for Hurricane Laura (DR-4572)  
The Texas Division of Emergency Management is accepting applications for the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program related to Hurricane Laura (FEMA-DR-4572) affecting Galveston, Jasper, Newton, and Orange counties. Eligible subapplicants include: state agencies, local governments, tribal governments, and certain private nonprofit organizations. Projects from jurisdictions within the declared counties will receive top priority, and regional flood projects associated with the affected watersheds will receive additional consideration. Applications are due September 7Learn more
Emergency Broadband Benefit Program Open to Eligible Households
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is mobilizing organizations to help share important consumer information on the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) program. The FCC has released an outreach partner toolkit with flyers and posters, social media posts, a fact sheet, a slide deck, and consumer handouts in multiple languages.

The EBB program is a temporary program that provides a discount of up to $50/month on a qualifying households’ internet bill. For eligible households there is the potential for a discount of up to $100 towards the purchase of a tablet, laptop or desktop computer from a participating provider. Eligible households can enroll to receive a monthly discount off the cost of broadband service from an approved provider by visiting
Federal Funding for Rural Communities
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide organizes funding opportunities identified in the CARES Act and other federal resources that can help support rural America. 
Grants and loans to construct, enlarge, or improve essential community facilities in rural areas.

Loans and grants to a non-profit entity or institution of higher education to establish revolving loan funds for rural micro-loan borrowers and micro entrepreneurs, or to provide training and technical assistance to micro entrepreneurs. 

Grants to help provide educational and medical services in rural areas through telecommunications and internet services investment.  

Loan guarantees to lenders supporting rural businesses and agricultural producers to supplement their working capital to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus.
Federal Funding for All Communities
U.S. Economic Development Administration grants for construction or non-construction projects that will retain or create jobs and/or generate private investment. 

National Environmental Education Foundation grants for local governments, non-profit organizations, and educational institutions to help mobilize volunteer networks, pay for maintenance projects or accessibility improvements, or conserve public lands impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible applicants can apply for up to $2,500. 

Center for Disease Control grants to train and deploy community health workers and to strengthen community resilience to fight COVID-19. State, county, and local government entities are eligible to apply. Grants are at minimum $350,000 and maximum $5,000,000. 

Grant awards for surface transportation infrastructure projects, including capital investments or planning projects, that will have a significant local or regional impact.  
Upcoming Economic Recovery Webinars
May 18 Preparing for the State Small Business Credit Initiative | International Economic Development Council 
The American Rescue Plan Act will provide $10 billion to fund the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI). This webinar will discuss the federal-state funding structure of SSBCI, recommendations for how various stakeholders can engage in the design and implementation of venture capital programs, and guidance on how to prepare. 

May 18 – 19 | Global Forum on Economic Recovery | U.S. Chamber of Commerce 
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce will convene its inaugural Global Forum on Economic Recovery on May 18 and 19. The forum will bring together government leaders and business executives to discuss the opportunities and impediments to a dynamic global recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Travel restrictions from the pandemic mean economic developers, chambers, tourism and commercial brokers have to be more creative when showcasing the top features in their region. This webinar will look at different strategies for creating themed virtual tours to attract investment, support workforce attraction, profile target industry sectors, attract film and video production and highlight tourism in your region. 
May 20 | Planning for Economic Recovery | International City/County Management Association and International Economic Development Council  
The International City/County Management Association and the International Economic Development Council have developed a new training course in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency: “Planning for Economic Recovery.” Some of the strategies covered in the free four-hour course are engaging small businesses in pre-disaster planning and preparedness, utilizing financial tools and resources for mitigation and recovery, and updating your economic recovery plan. 
Partner Resources
Visit the GCEDD website for information and links to local, regional, and partner organizations that have additional resources and information on economic recovery. A select list is presented below.

The Greater Houston Partnership has established the Greater Houston Business Recovery Center (GHBRC), which will provide guidance on policy and financing related to recovery programs.

RestoreYourEconomy is your resource for up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and its economic impacts.

The Texas Economic Development Council COVID-19 webpage catalogs webinars, small business program examples, research white papers, Texas Workforce Commission resources, and advice for retailers.

The National Association of Development Organizations COVID-19 resource center provides advocacy resources, upcoming virtual events and trainings, federal agency COVID-19 resources, national partner organizations response resources, Office of Management and Budget guidance, state-by-state workforce guidelines, and philanthropic resources for communities.

The International Economic Development Council Coronavirus Response webpage provides information on the IEDC's COVID-19 webinar series and frequently updated situational reports.

A wide range of free resources for Main Street leaders, including recovery planning tools, research, and best practices and examples from around the Main Street Network. 
Gulf Coast Economic Development District

The Economic Recovery Resources - Weekly Update is published by the