Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich this week released the Economic Development Fund annual report, which outlines how the County’s Economic Development Fund (EDF) was used throughout the year. Created in 1995, the EDF was designed to generate economic development activity with assistance from the public sector. Most of the assistance provided is in the form of conditional grants and loans supporting projects that will generate economic benefit to the County through job creation and substantial capital investment in real or personal property.
“For more than 25 years, the Economic Development Fund has helped create jobs and opportunities for Montgomery County residents,” said County Executive Elrich. “Our County faced one of its toughest economic time periods over the past year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are fortunate to have this fund to assist our businesses, as well the people who live here, through this challenging time to attract new jobs and investment into our County.”
According to a County press release:
The EDF provides an array of programs that play a vital role in the County’s efforts to attract and retain businesses. In 2020, four new EDF conditional grant projects were awarded. In addition, 16 Make Office Vacancy Extinct or MOVE grants were awarded to new companies in the County that represented more than 64,000 square feet of leased office space. The Small Business Assistance Program also provided more than $369,000 in assistance to small businesses in Wheaton affected by the Wheaton Redevelopment Project.
The EDF also provided financial assistance to many of the County’s small businesses that were adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. More than $21 million in funding to more than 2,300 Montgomery County small businesses were disbursed through the Public Health Emergency Grant Program. Additionally, more than $5.3 million were disbursed to more than 2,400 businesses through the Reopen Montgomery Program.