Economic development groups and local governments can apply now for site development grants under the Ready Site/Premier Site Program administered by the Mississippi Development Authority.
Ready Site/Premier Site is designed to assist public or private nonprofit economic development organizations or local governments with preparing site-ready locations to attract business development and private capital investment to the state. Grants administered under Ready Site/Premier Site can be used for improvements to publicly owned industrial property. The grants require a minimum 50 percent match from other sources.
Two types of property qualify for the grants: Ready Sites and Premier Sites. Ready Sites must have a minimum of 20 acres that can be developed and will be site-work ready in six months or have utilities in 12 months. Ready Sites are eligible to receive up to $50,000.
Premier Sites must have a minimum of 100 acres with a labor force that is able to attract the intended market. A workforce study is required. These sites must have attributes that distinguish them from other properties, such as being in high-demand locations, having large-scale, “mega” development acreage or having significant utility infrastructure already in place. Premier Sites are eligible to receive up to $250,000.
MDA will give priority to sites served by railways or with airport or port access.
Eligible applicants include cities, counties and public or private nonprofit economic development entities. This includes local authorities, commissions or other groups created by local-and-private legislation.
Grant money is available on a reimbursement basis and can be used to pay for such costs as architectural fees, environmental studies/assessments, clearing and grading, drainage system improvements and transportation infrastructure directly affecting the site.
Applications for both types of grants will be accepted through 5 p.m. Jan. 31. Application forms and additional information can be found at www.mississippi.org/sitedevelopment.