Rural Business Opportunity Grants
To promote sustainable economic development in rural communities with exceptional needs.
General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Office: Rural Business-Cooperative Service
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996, Section 741, Public Law 104-127.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Grants may be made to public bodies, nonprofit corporations, Federally-Recognized Native American Tribes, and cooperatives with members that are primarily rural residents and that conduct activities for the mutual benefit of the members.
Rural communities and businesses in rural areas.
Evidence of legal capacity. Evidence of financial strength and expertise in activities such as proposed in the application, sufficient to ensure accomplishment of the activities and objectives described in the application. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Preapplication coordination is required. An environmental impact statement is required for this program. An environmental impact assessment is required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. To be considered, all applicants shall submit the required details, forms, and documentation in accordance with the program's regulations, agency procedures, and the annual funding opportunity announcement application submission requirements
All applications will be reviewed in accordance with the program's regulations agency procedures, and the annual funding opportunity announcement application requirements.
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
From 60 to 90 days. Deadlines are announced via the program's annual funding opportunity announcement.
Approvals are no later than Sep 30 of each fiscal year.
Adverse decision may be appealed in accordance with procedures set out at 7 CFR 11.
How are proposals selected?
Grant selection criteria include the extent to which economic development resulting from the proposed project will be sustainable over the long term; the extent to which the project should lead to improvements in the quality of economic activity within the community, such as higher wages, improved benefits, greater career potential, and the use of higher level skills; the amount of funds from other sources; service to communities that are experiencing trauma due to a major natural disaster or the closing or major downsizing of a military facility or other major employer; service to communities that have remained consistently impoverished over the long term or have experienced long term population decline or job deterioration; and the extent of the project's usefulness as a best practice that may serve as a model for other communities.
How may assistance be used?
Grant funds may be used to assist in the economic development of rural areas by providing technical assistance, training, and planning for business and economic development.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Grantees must provide a financial report and performance activity report quarterly while the project is in process, with a final financial and performance report due within 90 days after the project is completed. The grantee must also submit a project evaluation report within 1 year after the project is completed. The Agency may also require a grantee to prepare a report suitable for public distribution describing the accomplishments made through the use of the grant and, in the case where the grand funded the development or application of a “best practice,” to describe that “best practice.” Finally, unless exempt, all grantees must comply with the reporting requirements at 2 CFR 170. Cash reports are not applicable. Grantees must provide a financial report and performance activity report quarterly while the project is in process, and a project evaluation report within 1 year after the project is completed. Grantees must provide a financial report and performance activity report quarterly while the project is in process, and a project evaluation report within 1 year after the project is completed. Grantees must provide a financial report and performance activity report quarterly while the project is in process, and a project evaluation report within 1 year after the project is completed.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503.
Project records must be maintained for three years following the completion of the award.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
This program has no statutory formula.
This program has no matching requirements.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Funding for complete projects is limited to projects that can be completed within 2 years. Projects of longer duration may only be funded for 1 year at a time. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: quarterly.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices. Contact the appropriate Rural Development State Office found at http://www.rd.usda.gov/contact-us/state-offices.
Deputy Administrator of Coopertativ 1400 Independence Ave room 4016, mailstop 3250, Washington, District of Columbia 20250 Phone: 202-720-7558
(Cooperative Agreements) FY 14 $0; FY 15 est $0; and FY 16 est $0
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Varies from year to year.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Implementing regulations are published in the Federal Register (64 FR 71984) The CFR citation is 7 CFR 4284, Subpart G.
Examples of Funded Projects