EMDC distributes $19M in funding to businesses and nonprofits

Posted on November 13, 2020 | Success Stories

Through a partnership with the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), EMDC is distributing $19 million in COVID-19 relief to businesses and nonprofits in Eastern Maine. In their role supporting Maine’s Economic Recovery Grant Program, EMDC offered direct technical support to applicants while processing applications for the funding. As a result, 438 businesses and nonprofits in Hancock, Penobscot, Piscataquis and Waldo counties received funding during phase one of the program.

Gov. Janet T. Mills and the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) announced the $200 million in federal funding for Maine small businesses and nonprofits in late August. Funded by the federal CARES Act, the Maine Economic Recovery Grant Program provides COVID-19 relief for up to $100,000 to Maine businesses and nonprofits.

Business and non-profits began receiving notifications of grant funding awards in late October. EMDC hand delivered checks to all 438 awardees shortly after. The idea for the funding originated in Gov. Mills’ Economic Recovery Committee. As a member of the Committee, EMDC President & CEO Lee Umphrey was part of the creation of the grant program.

“This is a program of action guiding the restoration of our communities and economy,” he said. “The local allocation of CARES Act federal funds is Governor Mills’ way to recognize the fortitude of our small businesses and nonprofits. This is also a great example of our government at all levels working in concert facing a common challenge thanks to the strong support of our Congressional Delegation; Senator King, Senator Collins, Congressman Golden and Representative Chellie Pingree.”

Based on the types of business sectors represented in EMDC’s distribution of 438 grants we saw the following businesses representing nineteen 19 different sectors received assistance:

• Accommodation and hospitality businesses with 33 percent of the awards;

• Retail sales businesses with 12.4 percent of the awards;

• Other services businesses with 11.2 percent of the awards;

• Non-profit businesses with 9.8 percent of the awards;

• Arts and entertainment businesses received 7.6 percent of the awards; and

• Construction businesses received 4.6 percent of the awards.

To learn how EMDC can support your business, email For information on how EMDC is helping businesses recover from the economic fallout created by the COVID-19 pandemic, visit their website at

Eastern Maine Development Corporation (EMDC) ( is a non-profit that fosters public-private partnerships and leverages resources to help communities, businesses and individuals reach long-term goals and achieve prosperity.

Piscataquis Observer

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