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Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program - Community Enterprise (CE) Program

Grants to Maine Local Agencies to Upgrade Business
Buildings and Venues in Commercial Areas

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD)

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

04/10/20 4:00 PM


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Grants to Maine local governments, with the exception of certain entitlement communities, for exterior building improvements and street-level enhancements in commercial areas. Funding is intended to improve business façades and streetscapes in downtown and village locales. Assistance to businesses may be in the form of grants or loans at the discretion of the community. Multi-jurisdictional applications from two or more communities must designate a lead community.

Applicants may apply to undertake one or more of the following activities: façade grants to for-profit or non-profit businesses for exterior improvements, including signage, painting, siding, awnings, lighting, display windows and other approved exterior improvements (interior improvements are not allowed) or streetscapes including pocket parks, benches, street lighting, tree plantings, signage, traffic calming improvements, sidewalks and other approved improvements; eligible planning activities necessary to complete the Project Development Phase. All streetscape improvements must take place on publicly owned property. 

The Project Development Phase includes:

1) Environmental review;

2) Cost analysis and justification;

3) Non-CDBG project funds commitments;

4) Management plan development; and

5) Specific state and federal requirements.

All CDBG funded activities must meet one of three National Objectives of the program. These objectives are:

  • Benefit low- and moderate-income persons;
  • Prevention and elimination of slum and blight conditions; and
  • Meeting community development needs having a particular urgency.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 187576

Estimated Size of Grant:

Maximum CE Grant Amount: $100,000
Maximum Amount of CE Assistance to Individual Business: $25,000

Term of Contract:

Funds will not be available until after July 1, 2020.

Applicants have six months to complete the project development phase process or notice of award may be rescinded.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

All units of general local government in Maine, including plantations, except for the entitlement communities of Auburn, Bangor, Biddeford, Lewiston, Portland and all of Cumberland County with the exception of Brunswick, Casco, and Frye Island are eligible to apply for and receive State CDBG program funds.

County governments may apply on behalf of the Unorganized Territory. Groups of local governments may apply for multi-jurisdictional or joint projects. Multi-jurisdictional applications require designation of one local government as the lead applicant and consent for that designation by each participating local government. Counties may apply for the Economic Development or Public Service programs on behalf of a collaboration of communities.

Eligible applicants, including counties as defined above, may apply for CDBG assistance on behalf of the five Maine Indian Tribes. Maine Indian Tribes are not themselves eligible applicants.

Sewer, water, storm drainage, parking, roads or streets, and other infrastructure improvements are not eligible.

Pre-Application Information:

Letters of Intent are due at DECD on or before January 31, 2020, 4:00 p.m.

All applications must be received at the physical location of the Office of Community Development by 4:00 P.M., Friday, April 10, 2020.

Communities applying for CE funds must demonstrate they will provide a direct cash match of at least 25% of the total CDBG grant award. The minimum 25% may come from any source public and/or private.

Units of local government may not apply for more than one CE program per grant year.

The selection process for the CE Program consists of two phases - an Application Phase and a Project Development Phase. For details, see

Project Development and Forms:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Letters of Intent may be submitted via email to:

Applications (by invitation only) must be received at the:

Office of Community Development
111 Sewall Street
59 State House Station
59 State House Station Augusta, ME 04333-0059
Phone: (207) 624-7484
TTY: 1-800-437-1220

Technical Assistance Contacts:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Maine: Excluding the entitlement communities of Auburn, Bangor, Biddeford, Lewiston, Portland and all of Cumberland County with the exception of Brunswick, Casco, and Frye Island.

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