Wayne County has raised all of the $32 million it pledged for a fund aimed at supporting small businesses in communities in southeastern Michigan, project partners said Tuesday.
Wafadinaro, executive director of the New Economy Initiative, a charity that supports entrepreneurship and a project of the Southeastern Michigan Community Foundation, issued notice that Wayne County is canceling the partnership and all funding to Wayne County. received on October 24th. Small Business Hub His funds were supposed to support his owners of his small businesses in cities such as Inkster, River His Rouge, Ecorus and Romulus.
The partnership was announced by Dinaro and Wayne County Chief Executive Warren Evans at the Mackinac Policy Conference of the Detroit Area Chamber of Commerce in June. The fund started as a $54 million investment and included matching from multiple private his partners. It has now reached $22 million.
The $32 million the county has pledged will come from funding from the American Rescue Plan Act, the government’s funding for COVID-19 relief, and that support is contingent on the Wayne County Board’s approval of the allocation. I was doing it. The Wayne County Commission’s office was not immediately available for comment.
Dinaro said he was “incredibly disappointed” when he received notice that Wayne County was out.
“So this is a $32 million injection into underserved small businesses across the county,” Dinaro said Tuesday. “…I really hope the county continues to focus on small businesses, especially in he BIPOC communities and underserved communities.”
Dinaro said no information was provided other than a letter explaining the cancellation.
Asked about the cancellation, Wayne County said in an emailed statement Tuesday that it was due to a change in leadership in the county administration and other unnamed factors.
“Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, rescuing small businesses and nonprofits has remained a priority for Evans executives,” Wayne County Department of Economic Development Director Luz Meza said in a statement. “The Evans administration has contributed more than $60 million to small business relief and remains committed to their continued support.”
She continues: “During the change in leadership and as the process of developing the Small Business Hub progressed, Wayne County leadership determined that building direct relationships with stakeholders in this effort would be most beneficial.”
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Dinaro said the fund will continue to move forward with its current funding. Funds will be distributed to business support organizations that provide technical assistance to small businesses.
Dinaro said the program is readjusting its plans based on notice.
“NEI is looking to expand into Wayne County,” Dinaro said. “We are still very much committed to supporting these communities and supporting business backing organizations. Now that $32 million is out of ARPA funding, that will change. Dinaro said there are still plans to provide assistance in several communities in Inkster, Ecos, River Rouge, Downriver and Romulus.
“But we’re still working out how it will go,” she said. The print needs to be smaller.”
Since the initial announcement, more than $4 million has already been distributed to business support organizations, according to Dinaro. This program he will be funded until 2025.
The fund is supported by Southeast Michigan Community Foundation, Ford Foundation, Hudson Weber Foundation, JP Morgan Chase, Cresge Foundation, Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation, WK Kellogg Foundation, and William Davidson Foundation.
Meza says: We strive to provide a transparent process to keep economic development moving forward within Wayne County. ”