The Houston-Galveston Area Council and the Gulf Coast Economic Development District stand ready to assist our 13-county region in pursuing strategies to recover from the double-layered impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the downturn in oil and gas markets. These are challenging times that create strains on our economy, as well as opportunities to rethink the way we all do business.
We will be issuing an Economic Recovery Resources - Weekly Update to help our local partners stay on top of new funding opportunities. The sheer volume of grant, loan, and technical assistance offerings can be overwhelming and difficult to navigate. We hope our weekly update and website make it easier for you to secure the resources you need to recover quickly.
Subscribers to the monthly Regional Economic Development Digest will receive the weekly update automatically.
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Closures of non-essential businesses due to the coronavirus and decline in oil prices led to a loss of 312,100 jobs in the Houston-Galveston region in April 2020. More than 452,000 Houston-area workers are now unemployed.
“Not surprisingly, customer-facing industries were the hardest hit,” said Parker Harvey regional economist at Workforce Solutions. “Leisure and Hospitality, which includes restaurants, bars, and hotels, accounted for one out of every three jobs lost in April.” Not-seasonally adjusted unemployment jumped nearly nine points from March (5.5 percent) to an all-time high 14.2 percent.
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The Future of Houston's Global Economy event on May 27 highlighted macro level shifts in the Houston-Galveston regional economy. Patrick Jankowski, Senior Vice President of Research at the Greater Houston Partnership, and Carlos Gutierrez, former U.S. Secretary of Commerce, discussed anticipated slow growth in the coming years, weak demand for exports, limited access to overseas markets, and limited travel. The regional economy, already trending toward a digital economy, will continue to transform; both public and private sector participation is essential to upskill the workforce to keep the region competitive. The Greater Houston Partnership will provide an economic update on the current state of Houston’s economy during the COVID-19 outbreak on June 23.
The Texas General Land Office announced the opening of its Competition Applications for the Community Development Block Grant Mitigation (CDBG-MIT) program. More information is available in the Application Guide, and the Application Portal can be found online. H-GAC is available to provide data and technical assistance to its members on their applications and in coordinating the development of projects involving multiple jurisdictions. Contact Justin Bower at 713-499-6653 or if you have any questions or would like to request assistance.
The U.S. Economic Development Administration released a Notice of Funding Opportunity for the $1.5 billion in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) funding. Applications are open on a rolling basis. A wide variety of projects can be funded through this program. Examples include water supply/wastewater, roads, and facilities. More information is available on the Economic Development Administration website. The GCEDD will provide technical assistance for applicants, please contact Josh Owens at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 832-681-2613 with any questions.
The Texas COVID Relief Fund is a donation-based fund that will provide critical resources to nonprofits, school districts, and government organizations serving Texas communities. Funds raised will be distributed through grants focused on the areas of community and economic development, healthcare, and education. Funds will also be used to support local priorities and organizations serving the unmet needs of vulnerable populations and underserved communities. Read the announcement of the relief fund.
$300 million has been allocated to fisheries assistance funding, by Sec. 12005 of the CARES Act, for states, Tribes, and territories with coastal and marine fishery participants who have been negatively affected by COVID–19. Texas has been allocated $9,237,949, and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will develop a plan for distributing funds. The Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission (GSMFC) wiill administer the distribution according to the states’ spend plans.
Fishery participants eligible for funding—including Tribes, commercial fishing businesses, charter/for-hire fishing businesses, qualified aquaculture operations, processors, and other fishery-related businesses—should work with their state marine fisheries management agencies, territories, or Tribe to understand the process for applying for these funds.
The US Department of Agriculture released a COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide organizes funding opportunities identified in the CARES Act and other federal resources that can help support rural America into the following categories community facilities, housing, water supply, and technology.
The following funding opportunities are currently open to local governments and economic development organizations.
Applications are being accepted on an ongoing basis.
View This Grant Opportunity
The U.S. Economic Development Administration supports development in economically distressed areas of the United States by fostering job creation and attracting private investment. These Public Works Grants help communities build the infrastructure they need to support job growth and private investment. Infrastructure types include water / wastewater, roads, and facilities.
If you have an economic development infrastructure need in your community, Contact Josh Owens at email@example.com or call 832-681-2613.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Community Facilities (CF) Direct Loan & Grant program provides funding to construct, enlarge, or improve essential community facilities in rural areas. The program has more than $2 billion available for rural communities to build or modernize education, health care, municipal and public safety facilities this fiscal year.
Application deadline is June 12, 2020.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development program supports predevelopment costs for water or wastewater projects to finance short-term and small capital projects that are not part of regular operation and maintenance costs for water and wastewater systems.
Application deadline is July 13, 2020.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) program helps rural communities use telecommunications to connect to each other and to the world, overcoming the effects of remoteness and low population density.
Presented by the Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC)
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Hosted by the Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC), presenters will discuss the current state of the travel and tourism in Texas and the impacts that travel restrictions and social distancing due to COVID-19 are having on the travel industry.
Presented by the International Economic Development Council
COVID-19 has disrupted food supply chains in America and around the globe. In this webinar, we will consider how economic developers can address food issues in their own communities and what to anticipate as supply chains return.
Presented by the Council of Development Finance Agencies
Presenters will discuss the development finance tools that can support rural economies as they rebuild to be more resilient and stronger than ever.
Presented by the Institute for Local Government
Learn how to quickly and strategically retool local economies in response to COVID-19 impacts on retail, hotels, tourism, industrial, and residential markets. Understand the evolving shifts in land use and occupancy, identify sectors that will come back first, and learn how to select and implement effective programs that can accomplish recovery in the near term and achieve resiliency over the long term. View other webinars from the Institute for Local Government.
Presented by The Brookings Institution
View this Webinar
A panel of local leaders will discuss the role their organizations are playing in supporting struggling small businesses and connecting them to resources at the local, state, and federal levels. Panelists will discuss how they are laying the groundwork for recovery in the months and years to come, and what further supports are still needed to ensure rural communities durably emerge from this crisis.
View This Webinar
Measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 are at a direct opposition to the tourism industry; when the recommendation is to stay home and avoid plane travel, no amount of promotion will bring back the flow of visitors. This webinar will provide information that you can implement and share with your tourism partners as the season ramps up.
Presented by the Texas Economic Development Council in partnership with the Council of Development Finance Agencies
Presenters will share first-hand knowledge of their experience utilizing public-private partnership (P3) financing for successful infrastructure projects, and they will provide insight on how development finance agencies can engage with P3s during uncertain economic conditions.
Presented by H-GAC, GCEDD and the U.S. Economic Development Administration
Join H-GAC from 2 to 3 p.m. Thursday, June 18, for a webinar with the Economic Development Administration to learn how your community can access Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act grant funding to support job creation and bolster economic recovery.
Mainstreet retail is at risk due to the Coronavirus. Innovative strategies can provide a lifeline to these businesses - from loan programs to easing restrictions on doing business in the street. Join our experts to hear from communities large and small on how they are saving Mainstreet.
Presented by the Greater Houston Partnership
Patrick Jankowski, the Partnership's Senior Vice President of Research, will provide an economic update on the current state of Houston’s economy during the COVID-19 outbreak.
These partner organizations provide information to local governments, businesses, and economic development organizations on available recovery resources.
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.
H-GALDC is a certified development company (CDC) and currently licensed throughout Texas. Its economic development by making available low-cost small businesses under the U.S. Small Business Administration's (SBA) SBA 504 Loan Program. The H-GLADC administers the GCEDD Revolving Loan Fund, which is providing bridge loans for Economic Injury Disaster Loan applicants.
H-GAC is the regional organization through which local governments consider issues and cooperate in solving area wide problems. The Houston-Galveston Area Council COVID-19 response page contains information for small businesses, teleworking best practices, and Workforce Solutions updates. It also provides updates on impacted H-GAC programs, meetings, and events.
The Texas Economic Development Council COVID-19 webpage catalogs COVID-19 resources, updated, and links. It includes webinars, small business program examples, research white papers, resources for businesses, 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 training, federal agency COVID-19 resources, member response resources, national partner organizations response resources, Office of Management and Budget guidance, state-by-state workforce guidelines, philanthropic resources for communities, and economic resilience resources.
The International Economic Development Council Corona Virus Response webpage provides information on the IEDC's COVID-19 webinar series, COVID-19 resources, and frequently updated situational reports.
To discuss economic recovery needs you may have, please contact:
Josh Owens firstname.lastname@example.org 832-681-2613
Houston-Galveston Area Council