Montana Department of Commerce Grants Available for Tribal Language Preservation Tribal Economic Development and Native Small Business DevelopmentTuesday, October 08, 2013 7:52:02 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday, October 3, 2013
Indian Country Economic Development Program
Montana Department of Commerce
Montana Department of Commerce Grants Available for Tribal Language Preservation, Tribal Economic Development and Native Small Business Development
(HELENA) - The Montana Department of Commerce Business Resources Division is accepting applications for two grant programs under the Indian Country Economic Development (ICED) Program - the Tribal Government Business Development Grants and the Montana Indian Equity Fund. Both programs are geared towards improving the economic conditions in tribal communities throughout Montana.
“Quality of life and opportunities to innovate and provide necessary goods and services on each and every main street in Montana is vitally important. We’re honored to administer programs at the Department that not only honor our government-to-government relationship with the tribal nations in Montana, but also allow us to collaborate in creating new revenue and entrepreneurial opportunities in our tribal communities” said Commerce Director Meg O’Leary.
In addition, the Department’s State Tribal Economic Development Commission has launched the $2 million Montana Indian Language Preservation Pilot Program in partnership with other collaborating entities.
The Tribal Government Business Development grants are available to the eight tribal nations in Montana including the Little Shell Tribe. Grant awards are up to $70,000 and are intended to support tribal business development projects, workforce training projects, entrepreneurial training, feasibility studies, and other types of priority economic development activities within Indian Country. Tribal governments are encouraged to match the funds $1:$1. Since its inception in 2006, tribal governments have matched every $1 invested by the state with $6 in tribal match. The application deadline is December 6, 2013.
The other grant program under ICED, the Montana Indian Equity Fund, addresses the lack of traditional forms of financing available to Native American business owners on reservations and in tribal communities by offering grants for business start-up or expansion. Up to $14,000 is available on each reservation to businesses of enrolled tribal members of tribes in Montana and to the Little Shell members. Businesses must match the grant funds $1:$1 with collateral, cash, or loan funds. The application deadline is October 31, 2013.
The intent of the Montana Indian Language Preservation Pilot Program (MILP3) is to make $250,000 available to each tribal nation for preserving Indian languages in spoken, written, or sign language forms and to assist in the preservation and curriculum goals of the State’s Indian Education for All. Local program advisory boards are tasked with establishing specific measureable outcomes for their respective language preservation programs.
Language activities include the development of audio and visual recordings, creation of dictionaries and other reference materials, the creation and publication of curriculum, language classes, language immersion camps, storytelling, and the publication of literature. Tribal governments have until September 30, 2013 to enter into contract with the Department of Commerce (State Tribal Economic Development Commission) for the language preservation funds. All tangible goods developed through the funding will be submitted to the Montana Historical Society by September 15, 2014 for language preservation efforts and archival purposes and will be accessible to the public.
For more information and application forms for the Tribal Government Business Development Grants, contact Heather Sobrepena-George, (406) 841-2775, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Indian Country Economic Development Program website at http://www.iced.mt.gov/tribalbusinessdevelopment. For more information and application forms for the grants available to Native-owned businesses, contact Philip Belangie, (406) 721-3663, email@example.com or visit the program website at http://www.iced.mt.gov/mief. For more information and application forms on the Indian Language Preservation Pilot Program, contact Heather Sobrepena-George, (406) 841-2775, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the State Tribal Economic Development Commission website at http://www.tribal.mt.gov.