USDA grants $50,000 for Navajo business incubator study

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - USDA Rural Development State Director Terry Brunner was joined by U.S. Representative Ben Ray Lujan at ceremonies held in Church Rock, N.M. on Aug. 13 to celebrate the obligation of $50,000 in federal funding granted to the Navajo Nation, Division of Economic Development Project Development Department.

During the ceremony Brunner said, "These funds will pay for a much needed study to make sure the proposed Church Rock Small Business Incubator will be successful in providing a place where the small businessperson can grow his or her business."

The grant will pay for a feasibility and marketing study to help create the Church Rock Small Business Incubator Service Center and Training Facility. The money will also provide financial support for entrepreneurship training and capacity building.

This funding made through USDA Rural Development's Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) program is available to public bodies, private nonprofit corporations, and federally-recognized Indian Tribal groups to finance and develop small and emerging private business enterprises. The funding can only be used in communities located in areas that have a population of less than 50,000 people.

The RBEG program is flexible and the funds can be used for a wide variety of projects including: marketing studies, feasibility studies, business plans, and training. The funding allows the non-profit recipient to finance small and emerging businesses to purchasing machinery and equipment or to create a revolving loan fund (providing partial funding as a loan to a small and emerging business for the purchase of equipment, working capital, or real estate); or to construct a building for a business incubator for small and emerging businesses.

USDA Rural Development's mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. Rural development fosters growth in homeownership, finances business development, and supports the creation of critical community and technology infrastructure.

Further information on rural programs is available at any local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting www.rurdev.usda.gov.

Additional information on the RBEG program can be obtained by calling your nearest USDA Rural Development area office.

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