Eight S.C. organizations will be awarded CARES Act Recovery Assistance from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to help boost their economic development programs during the pandemic, the Commerce Department said in a news release.
The Commerce Department is granting a total of $3.2 million — $400,000 each — in coronavirus relief funding to the organizations.
In the Lowcountry, a grant is going to the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments, which will be used to “develop and support the implementation of a comprehensive short- and long-term economic disaster plan to boost the region’s critical tourism sector, address public health concerns, and assess infrastructure and service needs.”
U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in the release that the grants will provide the state with resources to make a faster economic comeback.
“These investments come at a crucial time to help South Carolina’s and our nation’s economy come roaring back and provide hardworking Americans with new opportunities,” said Dana Gartzke, an assistant to Ross. “We are pleased to make these investments in South Carolina’s EDA Economic Development Districts to help them prevent, prepare and respond to coronavirus.”
Gov. Henry McMaster said this type of targeted investment is needed to help South Carolina’s small businesses turn the corner.
“President (Donald) Trump’s administration’s investment will ultimately create and save countless jobs, serving as a catalyst to get our economy back to the record strength we saw before COVID-19,” McMaster said.
The other seven S.C. grants are:
- Catawba Regional Council of Governments: Update its Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, focus on regional resiliency and disaster response by creating a regional infrastructure plan, and develop a regional strategy for adaptive reuse of underutilized public assets.
- Central Midlands Council of Governments: Develop strategies to strengthen key sectors of the regional economy, including small businesses and businesses owned by women and minorities.
- Lower Savannah Council of Governments: Provide technical assistance to local businesses and communities.
- Pee Dee Regional Council of Governments: Support local governments with economic recovery and mitigation assistance.
- Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments: Facilitate studies of broadband service gaps among business and residential communities and industry adaptability to post-pandemic conditions.
- Upper Savannah Council of Governments: Respond to the coronavirus pandemic by providing technical assistance to local businesses and communities to support pandemic recovery efforts.
- Waccamaw Regional Council of Governments: Provide planning, coordination, technical assistance and organizational capacity-building to bolster economic development activities in the region.