The Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) has awarded $1.37 million from the Nebraska EDA Tourism Grant Program to six subrecipients. The awards cover two project types: Events & Marketing projects and Planning & Technical Assistance projects. Awards in a third category—Infrastructure Projects—will be announced in the coming weeks pending review and approval from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA).
DED received an allocation of $3.074 Million from EDA to support the travel, tourism and outdoor recreation sector, which was disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency. LB 1024, enacted by the Nebraska Legislature in 2022, directed DED to accept proposals for subawards located within Qualified Census Tracts in Omaha, Lincoln, and Greater Nebraska communities. From December 22, 2022 to February 2, 2023, DED accepted applications for three project types: Events and Marketing, Planning and Technical Assistance, and Infrastructure Projects.
A total of 29 applications were received for the Nebraska EDA Tourism Grant Program totaling over $8 million in requests.
DED reviewed applications and made subaward recommendations that were forwarded to EDA in March 2023 for review and approval. Four recommendations for the Event and Marketing project type and two for the Planning and Technical Assistance project type have received final approval from EDA as of May 10, 2023:
Event and Marketing
Casa De La Cultura (Omaha) – $352,000
Museum of Nebraska Art (Kearney) – $225,000
City of Beatrice – $150,000
Omaha Theater Company – $250,000
Planning and Technical Assistance
Freedomtainment (Omaha) – $352,000
City of Kearney – $41,160
The Infrastructure Project recommendations remain under review by EDA. Those recommendations will require final approval from EDA prior to being announced by DED.
For more information on the Nebraska EDA Tourism grant program, visit the program webpage at https://opportunity.nebraska.gov/programs/recovery/eda-tourism/.