IEED to Fund Feasibility Studies for Economic Projects in Opportunity Zones

The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act created Opportunity Zones to spur economic development and job creation in economically-distressed communities across the United States. There are nearly 9,000 designated Opportunity Zones. (FlickrCC/Berkeley Lab)

Native American Business Development Institute (NABDI) grant program to fund $900,000 worth in feasibility studies for Tribal economic development projects in Opportunity Zones.

The IEED’s Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED) seeks to fund 20 to 25 grants, worth $25,000 to $75,000 each, for Tribes and entities to undertake feasibility studies of proposed economic projects and businesses in designated Opportunity Zones. The application deadline is end-of-day September 15th. 

The Native American Business Development Institute (NABDI) grant program is intended to “empower Tribes to make informed decisions regarding their economic futures.” The grants will fund Tribes in obtaining guidance on how the proposed project, business or technology can attract investments from an Opportunity Fund.

“Historically, NABDI studies have placed Tribal economic development opportunities at the doorstep of investors, lenders and other government granting agencies,” said Tara Mac Lean Sweeney, assistant secretary of Indian Affairs. “This year, these grants will leverage the possibilities and advantages of investments in Opportunity Zones. We look forward to all the dynamic and creative submissions.”

The Opportunity Zones program was enacted as part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 to drive development and economic activity to low-income areas across the nation. The incentive provides capital gains deferrals and tax breaks to investors on projects within Opportunity Zones. Common pursuits are real estate development and renewable energy projects. 

A map and list of Opportunity Zones can be found at https://www.cdfifund.gov/Pages/Opportunity-Zones.aspx, and IEED’s solicitation for NABDI funding can be found in the Federal Register and at https://www.grants.gov/.

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