Funding & Grant Opportunities

The East Tennessee Development District is involved in a number of economic development grant programs, both state and federal, that assist new or expanding industries in East Tennessee. The economic development grants must be for specific projects, and applicants must be able to prove that job creation and private investment will result from the project.

Economic Development Administration (EDA)

EDA is a federal program that primarily provides funding to local governments for infrastructure, but limited funding is also available to conduct economic development studies.

FastTrack Program

The FastTrack Program is administered by the State of Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (ECD) and consists of three grant programs: (1) job training, (2) infrastructure development, and (3) a special economic development fund, as described below.

FastTrack Job Training Assistance Program (FJTAP) – This incentive begins with a company developing a training plan including the number of people to be hired, types of skills required and types of training needed. Job training assistance can include either traditional or job based training reimbursement.

FastTrack Infrastructure Development Program (FIDP) – These grant funds are available to local communities to improve public infrastructure.

FastTrack Economic Development Program (FEDP) – These grants or loans may be used to facilitate economic development activities that are not eligible for FIDP or FJTAP funds. These activities include, but are not limited to relocating equipment, purchasing equipment, building repairs and improvements, temporary office space or other temporary equipment related to relocation or expansion. These economic development funds are intended to be used in exceptional circumstances when the funds will make a proportionally significant economic impact on the affected community.

State Industrial Access (SIA) Road Program

The State of Tennessee allocates funding on an annual basis for the Tennessee Industrial Access Road Program. The program is administered by the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT). The grant program provides funding for publicly owned access roads.

Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG)

The US Department of Agriculture Rural Business Enterprise Grants (RBEG) Program provides grants to finance the development of small and emerging businesses in rural areas. The funds can be used for a variety of activities, including land acquisition, construction, renovation, technical assistance, and project planning.

Please contact Mitch Loomis for more information on any of these grants at