Today, the Michigan Department of Labor & Economic Opportunity (LEO) and the Michigan Municipal League (MML), announced they have partnered to create the Michigan Local Capacity Enhancement Program through a $1 million grant under the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Under the new program, the League will provide local communities with a robust online resource hub (MIFundingHub.org) and technical assistance to support them in understanding, seeking and successfully deploying new grant funds for economic growth, infrastructure and other community projects.
“LEO is excited to partner with the League on this local capacity program and to develop the much-needed MI Funding Hub,” said LEO Director Susan Corbin. “Michigan Communities of all sizes will have the opportunity to gain knowledge on how to successfully deploy new grant opportunities that will directly impact on their community’s and help their residents thrive.”
With billions in available funding for local units of government through programs like ARPA, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act there is a significant need for communities to track funding opportunities as they become available. For many communities across Michigan, especially those small and medium-sized, navigating this process and developing projects and programs that meet their current and future needs exceeds their capacity.
“Here in Saginaw, we’ve relied on the League to help us decide how to invest our ARPA funding,” said Brenda F. Moore, Saginaw Mayor. “This partnership between with the League and the state will ensure that we can continue to depend on this assistance moving forward. It’s great news for Michigan’s communities and cities like Saginaw.”
In 2020, the League launched two programs — “ServeMICity” and “MI Water Navigator” — to help communities plan and secure new recovery and infrastructure funding for projects that address long-standing community needs. Through those technical assistance and training programs they’ve helped hundreds of communities leverage over $200 million in new state and federal funding.
“This new funding from LEO will allow the League to build on our already successful technical assistance programs that are helping communities leverage new federal funding for high impact local programs,” Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the League. “This work will provide local governments with the critical information and tools they need to capitalize on this once in a generation opportunity.”
Gilmartin explained there are billions of dollars in new federal funding available and Michigan has an opportunity to maximize access to these resources by providing support to communities in understanding, seeking and successfully deploying new grant funds for economic growth, infrastructure and other community projects.
With additional funding from LEO the League will significantly scale up its technical assistance program for communities including:
- Creating a robust online resource hub that provides information on new grants and funding opportunities as well as resources and tools for successfully managing projects.
- Providing technical assistance for local governments to assist them in understanding funding opportunities, evaluating local project options and potential grant matches, and directing them to applicable funding sources.
- Offering a variety of training and outreach efforts including funding newsletters, grant readiness training, webinars and more.
The League will act as the project lead for this initiative and oversee the project timeline, budget, strategic partnership management and continuous improvement activities. Technical assistance for communities is available now, and the online funding and resource hub is projected to be completed in January 2024.
To learn more about this program or get technical assistance in navigating funding opportunities, visit MIFundingHub.org or contact the League team at: email@example.com.