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An Introduction To Local Grants

In this article we are going to go over what Local Grants are and how they can help your business.

You can also find grant money available for small businesses to access and use at a more local level. You will want to see if your city or nearby cities has or have an Economic Development Council. These councils offer a wealth of help for new local businesses. They all vary a bit, but likely here is where you can find out what the business climate and the demographics are for the town in which you will want to do business, which will assist you in writing your business plan.

One example of this is the Thurston County Economic Development Center. They offer grants through the Washington Technology Center's Research and Technology Development Grant Program, for applied research projects to make their way out of the lab and into the marketplace. Another type of financial assistance they make available is the Community Development Block Grant Float Loan Program, where the city applies for a grant and with that money makes available short term loans to private businesses that will create jobs for lower-income individuals

You can also sometimes find business grant money from your local government. In the Seattle area, among others, if you are planning a larger new business that will employ 150 people and will require building, you can receive King County Green Building Grants if your project will be LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, certified, which is building for conserving resources. 

Your local Economic Development Administration might also provide you with resources to start a business. If you are a non-profit organization or an affiliate of one, you might be able to apply for an economic development grant that can be used by the nonprofit for expenses related to planning for lessening unemployment and improving incomes in an economically distressed area, which can make your business plan stronger and increase the chances of your business on paper becoming a reality.

Other places to look for local grants are at your town or city's Chamber of Commerce. Sometimes they might not offer a grant to a business, but they do offer grants to non-profit organizations, so your business could work with a local non-profit to develop a program that would meet the grant's qualifications.

Through a Chamber of Commerce you might also find that a particular city offers a grant to qualified businesses equal to a percentage of their investment in the first year of the business's existence if the company is located in a particular area of the city.

If you belong to a business organization or association you might find local grants available through these resources, as well as small private foundations and family foundations that are located in your area and which might fund local projects. There are many business organizations and associations available, ranging from the Arizona Bio-industry Association to the American Philosophical Association and the Computing Technology Industry Association, to name a small number of business associations out there. These types of organizations often offer help and support to a new business through education, perhaps a mentorship program, and sometimes grants.

You now know what a Local Grant is and can start looking for one that matches your business plans.


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