The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced it is awarding a $300,000 CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to the University of Puerto Rico’s Mayagüez campus to boost its capacity to support regional economic development strategies in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This investment comes at a crucial time to help Puerto Rico’s and our nation’s economy come roaring back and provide hard-working Americans with new opportunities,” said Dana Gartzke, performing the delegated duties of the assistant secretary of commerce for economic development.
“We’re pleased to make this investment in the University of Puerto Rico’s Business and Economic Development Center to respond to the coronavirus by providing technical assistance to community development organizations that are pursuing federal and private foundation funding for planning and implementing projects,” she said.
The UPR-Mayagüez, a current EDA University Center grantee, is one of the more than 850 existing, high-performing EDA Economic Development District, University Center, Tribal, and Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) grant recipients invited to apply for supplemental funding under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
As part of the program, the UPR-Mayagüez establishes an economic development planning framework, process, and strategy that supports entrepreneurship, private capital investment and job creation in the region.
“It provides technical assistance and research and development tools to increase productivity, spur innovation, and promote entrepreneurship to help increase long-term regional competitiveness and economic diversification,” according to the EDA’s website.
“I’m proud of the perseverance and strength shown by our communities coast to coast throughout this pandemic, and these funds will help provide Puerto Rico with the necessary resources to make a swift and lasting economic comeback,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.