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Grant Opportunities

The following list represents current grant opportunities that may apply to local governments in Southeast Michigan. It is not an exhaustive list, but a compilation of opportunities made available to SEMCOG.

New SEMCOG report: Community and Economic Development Resource Guide for Local Governments

This report identifies grants and other resources available to communities for housing and neighborhood stabilization, community revitalization, and economic development. It provides a brief overview of key formula and competitive grants available to local communities from federal and state agencies generally associated with community and economic development. The guide also includes a number of technical assistance and loan programs that local communities can use to supplement other resources. View the report.  

Community and Economic Development

National Resource Network - New Solutions for Cities
Deadline: Rolling

The National Resource Network (the Network) is a core component of the Obama Administration’s Strong Cities, Strong Communities (SC2) initiative, and develops and delivers innovative solutions to American cities to help them address their toughest economic challenges. The Network works with local leaders to identify practical solutions, share real-world expertise and best practices, and help cities develop the tools and strategies they need to grow their economies.

Funded with $10 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Network is a new program that leverages the expertise, partnerships, and resources of the public and private sectors to help cities comprehensively tackle their most pressing challenges. The Network provides cities with customized tools and advice to build strategic partnerships, strengthen their economic competitiveness, and marshal public and private sector resources.

The National Resource Network has an open request for applications (RFA) for technical assistance. Learn more about the RFA.
View the National Resource Network's Grant Opportunities page.

U.S. Rural Infrastructure Opportunity Fund
Deadline: Rolling

Rural communities looking to make investments on infrastructure projects now have a new option for private sector funding. In an effort to revitalize economies across rural America, CoBank has partnered with Capitol Peak Asset Management to set up the U.S. Rural Infrastructure Opportunity Fund. Community leaders are encouraged to submit basic project proposals through to be considered for financing through CoBank’s initial $10 billion investment in the fund. With CoBank’s upfront funding as a stamp of approval for projects, additional private sector investors will be encouraged to participate. Projects of any size are eligible and criteria for selection may vary.

U.S. Department of Agriculture – Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive
Deadline: December 15, 2014

The Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) grant program is designed to support projects that increase the purchase of fruits and vegetables among low-income consumers participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by providing incentives at the point of purchase. Applications are being requested for projects in three categories: (1) FINI Pilot Projects (not to exceed a total of $100,000 over one year); (2) Multi-year, community-based FINI Projects (awards not to exceed a total of $500,000 over no more than four years); and (3) Multi-year FINI Large-Scale Projects (awards of $500,000 or more over no more than four years). The amount available for grants is anticipated at $31.5 million.

For additional information, please visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s FINI website.

National Endowment for the Arts - Our Town
Deadline: December 15, 2014

Art works to support creative, economically-competitive, healthy, resilient, and opportunity-rich communities. Excellent art is an essential part of building a strong community, as important as land-use, transportation, education, housing, infrastructure, and public safety.  Artists and community development practitioners across our nation --sometimes one and the same, sometimes working together -- are striving to make places more livable with enhanced quality of life, increased creative activity, a distinct sense of place, and vibrant local economies that together capitalize on their existing assets. The NEA defines these efforts as Creative Placemaking.

Through Our Town, subject to the availability of funding, the National Endowment for the Arts will provide a limited number of grants for creative placemaking projects that contribute towards the livability of communities and help transform them into lively, beautiful, and resilient places with the arts at their core. Our Town prioritizes partnerships between arts organizations and government, private, and nonprofit organizations to achieve livability goals for communities.

Our Town offers support for projects in two areas:

  • Arts Engagement, Cultural Planning, and Design Projects that represent the distinct character and quality of their communities
  • Projects that Build Knowledge About Creative Placemaking

See more information on the National Endowment for the Arts website.

Livability Solutions with support from the United States Environmental Protection Agency - Technical Assistance Program
Deadline: January 9, 2015

Livability Solutions partners will lead one- and two-day targeted workshops in communities around the U.S. Communities will learn how to use one of Livability Solutions' tools or workshop approaches, such as walkability audits, green infrastructure valuation guides, shared use agreements, and community image surveys, that can help achieve goals of enhancing livability, creating lasting economic and environmental improvements, and improving residents’ public and social health. A short report will be prepared for each community following the technical assistance. Eight to ten communities will be selected to receive technical assistance this year. Learn more here.


U.S. Department of Agriculture: Rural Development's Business & Industry Guaranteed Loan Program
Deadline: Rolling

The purpose of the B&I Guaranteed Loan Program is to improve, develop, or finance business, industry, and employment and improve the economic and environmental climate in rural communities. This purpose is achieved by bolstering the existing private credit structure through the guarantee of quality loans which will provide lasting community benefits. A borrower may be a cooperative organization, corporation, partnership, or other legal entity organized and operated on a profit or nonprofit basis; an Indian tribe on a Federal or State reservation or other Federally recognized tribal group; a public body; or an individual. For more information, please visit the USDA Business Assistance website.

Environmental Protection Agency, Projects to Improve Air Quality at Ports
Deadline: December 11, 2014

EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality (OTAQ) is soliciting proposals that achieve significant reductions in diesel emissions in terms of tons of pollution produced by diesel engines and diesel emissions exposure, from fleets operating at marine and inland water ports located in areas of poor air quality.

Eligible diesel vehicles, engines and equipment may include drayage trucks, marine engines, locomotives and nonroad engines, equipment or vehicles used in the handling of cargo at a marine or inland water port.

Eligible entities include public port authorities and state or local government agencies with jurisdiction over transportation or air quality.

The total estimated funding for this competition is approximately $5 million. EPA anticipates awarding two to five cooperative agreements from this announcement. Applicants cannot request more than $2 million in federal funding.

For more information, please visit the grant announcement website.

Environmental Protection Agency - FY 2015 Brownfields Assessment and Cleanup Grant Guidelines
Deadline: December 19, 2014

These brownfields grants may be used to address sites contaminated by petroleum and hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants (including hazardous substances co-mingled with petroleum). Opportunities for funding are as follows: Brownfields Assessment Grants (each funded up to $200,000 over three years; Assessment Coalitions are funded up to $600,000 over three years) and Brownfields Cleanup Grants (each funded up to $200,000 over three years). Please note that applicants who received an Assessment grant from EPA in Fiscal Year 2014 (FY14) are eligible to apply under this competition. If the applicant was a member of a coalition that was awarded a grant in FY14, that applicant is also eligible to apply under this assessment competition.

For more information, visit the EPA's Brownfields and Land Revitalization funding page.

Michigan Department of Environmental Quality - Coastal Zone Management Program
Deadline: December 30, 2014

The Coastal Zone Management Program provides grant funds to our coastal communities and partners to assist in the development of vibrant and resilient coastal communities through the protection and restoration of our sensitive coastal resources and biologically diverse ecosystems. The Coastal Zone Management Program has five focus areas for this round of funding: Public access, coastal habitat, coastal hazards, coastal water quality, and coastal community development.

Grant awards will be made between $10,000 - $100,000. A one-to-one non-federal match is required for all projects and may be in the form of cash, in-kind services, or donations.

For a complete RFP package, please visit the DEQ’s Coastal Zone Management Program website.

U.S. Forest Service – The Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program
Deadline: January 16, 2015

This is a competitive grant program whereby local governments, qualified nonprofit organizations, and Indian tribes are eligible to apply for grants to establish community forests through fee simple acquisition of private forest land from a willing seller. The purpose of the program is to establish community forests by protecting forest land from conversion to non-forest uses and provide community benefits. Some of these benefits include sustainable forest management; clean air, water, wildlife habitat, and other environmental benefits: forest-based educational programs; service as models of effective forest stewardship; and recreational benefits secured with public access.

The Administration proposed to fund the CFP at $1.683 million for fiscal year 2015. Individual grant applications may not exceed $400,000. All applicants must demonstrate a 50 percent match of the total project cost. The match can include cash, in-kind services, or donations, which shall be from a non-Federal source. For more information, please visit the U.S.F.S. Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program website.


Check back soon for future opportunities.

Ongoing grant opportunities

Allstate Foundation

Funding programs at the national, regional, and local levels. Learn more

CVS Caremark Community Grants

This program provides financial assistance to nonprofit organizations that provide various services in communities including health care access, wellness, and prevention programs.

Department of Housing and Urban Development

In FY 2011, SEMCOG was awarded a Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). As a result, the entire Southeast Michigan region has been designated with Preferred Sustainability Status (PSS), meaning applicants for certain other HUD discretionary grants can be awarded 2 bonus points on their applications. Interested applicants should visit SEMCOG’s PSS webpage.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources

The DNR's Grants webpage includes several resources, including a list of available grants by type.

MiRecGrants is Michigan DNR's homebase for local units of government applying for Michigan Recreation Grants. It hosts the creation, management, submission, tracking, and amending of grant applications and awarded grants.

Grant writing resources

American Grant Writers' Association - find information on hiring a Certified Grant Writer. 

Grant Writing USA provides grant writing and grant management workshops through the United States.

SEMCOG members may request a scholarship for a two-day workshop on grant writing or grant management. The grant writing covers how to write grant proposals start to finish and how to locate and track relevant grant opportunities. Federal, state, local and non-governmental, private sector grants are covered. You'll learn everything you need to know to get started writing grants. Contact Susan Stefanski for more information.

View a list of previous grant-funded projects within SEMCOG's AgileGov database.