Public comment period set for Proposed Amendment to 2011-2013 Qualified Action Plan for Nebraska Talent and Innovation Initiative

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Public comment period set for Proposed Amendment to 2011-2013 Qualified Action Plan for Nebraska Talent and Innovation Initiative

The Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) will conduct a public comment period from June 12- 26, 2013 for citizens to comment on the proposed 2011-2013 Qualified Action Plan amendment for the Nebraska Talent and Innovation Initiative (“Qualified Action Plan”).  The Qualified Action Plan sets forth the activities eligible for assistance under the Business Innovation Act, the Site and Building Development Act, and the Nebraska Economic Gardening Program.

The Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) will conduct a public comment period from June 12- 26, 2013 for citizens to comment on the proposed 2011-2013 Qualified Action Plan amendment for the Nebraska Talent and Innovation Initiative (“Qualified Action Plan”).  The Qualified Action Plan sets forth the activities eligible for assistance under the Business Innovation Act, the Site and Building Development Act, and the Nebraska Economic Gardening Program.

Details of the proposed amendment include:

  • Extending the current Qualified Action Plan through December 31, 2013 (currently set to expire June 30).  New Business Innovation Act and the Site and Building Development Act plans will be developed for calendar years 2014 and 2015, and be available for public comment later this year.
  • Changing the process for amending the Qualified Action Plan in response to LB 78 (2013) that eliminated the provisions of Nebraska statutes authorizing the Economic Development Commission.  Amendments will now be submitted to the DED Director for review and approval.  If approved, the proposed amendment will be made available on the DED website for a 14-day public review and comment period.  At the end of 14 days, the DED will consider any public input provided, and the Director will then issue final amendment approval.
  • Continuing to accept applications for programs with open cycles including, but not limited to the Nebraska Small Business Innovation Research Program and Nebraska Innovation Fund, through December 31, 2013 (instead of June 30).
  • Qualifying eligible value-added agriculture projects for assistance under the Nebraska Research and Development Grant Program.  Agriculture cooperatives, farming or ranching operations, and private businesses and enterprises operating in Nebraska will be eligible to apply for financial assistance, if such entities are pursuing innovative value-added agriculture research and development projects.  This will include research, proof of concept, and development projects.
  • Accepting applications for funding from the Nebraska Economic Gardening Program through December 31, 2013, or until all funding is exhausted.  Pursuant to LB 628 (2013), eligible businesses include Nebraska-based high-growth, early-stage businesses that are developing and commercializing a technology product, process, or service, and employ no fewer than two and no more than 50 employees.
  •  Accepting applications for funding from the Business Innovation Act (BIA) Microenterprise Technical Assistance Grant program, with a due date of October 15, 2013.
  •  Continuing to award funding allocated in the Qualified Action Plan through December 31, 2013, and increasing the estimated Site and Building Development Act allocation to $5 million total through December 31, 2013.

Copies of the proposed amendment to the Qualified Action Plan will be available on June 12 on DED’s website: http://staging.neded.org/business/talent-a-innovation-initiative, or can be requested from Nisha Avey at 800-426-6505, 402-471-8272, or Libby Elder at 402-471-3762 or via email at: nisha.avey@nebraska.gov or libby.elder@nebraska.gov

Mail written comments by June 26 to: Nisha Avey, Nebraska Department of Economic Development, P.O. Box 94666, Lincoln, NE 68509-4666; or email: nisha.avey@nebraska.gov . Comments will be accepted starting June 12.

Los individuos no hablan Inglés y los individuos con discapacidad podrán solicitar las ayudas y servicios auxiliares necesarios para la participación de contacto con el Departamento de Desarrollo Económico PO Box 94666, Lincoln, Nebraska 68509-4666, o nisha.avey@nebraska.gov .

FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT: Patty Wood at 800-426-6505, 402-471-1559, or email: patty.wood@nebraska.gov