Allegany County Government is pleased to announce the launch of Invest Allegany, a $2,000,000 investment program split over two years to create long term economic growth. The Allegany County Commissioners are allocating these funds to help accelerate the county’s business community recovery, and support redevelopment of the downtown cores of Cumberland and Frostburg, as well as main streets across Allegany County.
The goal of this program is to create long term value in the county by providing matching grant funds for capital improvement projects. These projects, when complete, will spur new job growth, encourage direct investment, preserve existing community infrastructure, increase the value of commercial and residential units in impacted areas, and ignite entrepreneurship in Allegany County.
Timeline and Important Dates (UPDATED)
Grant Opens: Monday, February 21, 2022
Deadline for Application: 4:00 pm EST
on Friday, April 1, 2022, Extended to May 6, 2022
Grant Review Period: May 9th, 2022-May 20th, 2022
Anticipated Award Announcement: Thursday, May 26, 2022
Program Details and Eligibility:
- Awards range from a minimum of $20,000 to $250,000.
- Awards require a 1:1 match from the applicant. E.g. a $100,000 award would require a $100,000 investment from the applicant, for a total project investment of $200,000.
- Match is defined as the applicant's ability to provide cash, financing and/or private equity investment.
- Grants (private or public) and/or in-kind cannot be used for applicant’s match.
- Current equity in real property cannot be used as a match.
- The match funding may be secured by multiple sources.
- Eligible uses include commercial, retail, mixed-use, or multifamily market rate residential projects. Single family homes, student housing rentals, and/or duplexes will not qualify.
- Funds must be used towards capital improvements with consideration for allotting up to 10% of grant requests to be used towards capital goods.
- Ineligible use of the funds include: Staff costs, salaries, marketing, inventory and supplies, etc. Funding shall not be used for acquisition or the construction of a new building.
- ‘New construction’ refers to site preparation for, and construction of, entirely new structures.
- Building acquisition can be pending upon application to the grant, however purchase must be finalized before grant is approved.
- Cost of building acquisition cannot be used for the match. Only funds set aside specifically for capital improvements will be considered for the match grant.
- Applications will be reviewed by Allegany County before any approval will be granted or inferred.
- Clearly defined project scoring criteria will be released along with the application so that applicants can have a clear understanding of program goals.
- Preference on the scoring criteria will be given to applicants that are Allegany County residents or have existing business interests in Allegany County that have a direct impact on employment and/or current tax base.
- Projects located in a municipality in the areas defined in the below maps will be given preference on the scoring criteria for award.
- Preference on the scoring criteria will be given to projects that use Allegany County based design, engineering, or contractors for at least 50% of the total cost of the project.
- All projects shall comply with federal, state, and local codes, laws, and ordinances.
- Applicants must be for-profit, tax-paying entities. Applicants who are not in good standing with the County or State of Maryland are ineligible for funding.
- A developed business plan outlining the renovation schedule and major components of the project shall accompany the application form.
- This must include a line item budget with estimates from reputable vendors.
- Proof of match funds must also be provided.
- Finance commitment letters can be used in lieu of financing with reasonable expectation of loan completion by time of grant approval.
- Projects shall begin within 12 months after receiving grant funds and must reach substantial completion by 18 months.
- Allegany County reserves the right to dictate the terms of grant dispersion to applicants, based on project details, cost and scope.
- Applicants shall agree that their project will be made public and may be used for promotional purposes of Allegany County Government.
- All grants are subject to funding availability.
- Applying for the Invest Allegany grant does not mean application will be awarded. There is a high probability that applications for this program will surpass grant money allocated for awards.
Required Supporting Documents:
The following documents will be required once the application process opens. Please prepare in gathering the necessary documents in the interim to prepare for applying.
- Fully completed application.
- Developed business plan.
- Line Budget Workbook with accompanying contractor quotes.
- Proof of funds available to provide the match. Finance commitment letters can be used in lieu of financing with reasonable expectation of loan completion by time of grant approval.
Letters of Support for the project, either from local municipality, businesses or civic organizations
The Invest Allegany applications will be reviewed by a selection committee and will be ranked by the following criteria:
- Soundness of business plan
- Impact on local placemaking
- Potential for positive job creation and/or multifamily market rate housing
Preference on the scoring criteria will be given to applicants that are Allegany County residents or have existing business interests in Allegany County that have a direct impact on employment and/or current tax base. Projects located in a municipality in the areas defined in the below maps will be given preference on the scoring criteria for award. Preference on the scoring criteria will be given to projects that use Allegany County based design, engineering, or contractors for at least 50% of the total cost of the project.
Investment Priority Maps
The below maps detail the areas of investment priority. Projects located within these borders will be given preference on the scoring criteria for grant award. Projects located outside of these borders will still be considered, based on the other criteria stated above.