WASHINGTON, D.C. — Nebraska was awarded a $1.8 million CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to support tourism across the state.
The U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration (EDA) awarded the funds to the Nebraska Tourism Commission, in an effort to boost the state’s tourism industry through coordination and marketing. This EDA grant, to be matched with $450,000 in local funds, is expected to retain 810 jobs, according to officials.
“President Biden is dedicated to supporting our nation’s tourism industry as it not only recovers from this pandemic but builds back stronger,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. “This EDA investment in the Nebraska Tourism Commission will support statewide tourism recovery efforts through the restoration of visitor spending and the retention of critical tourism and hospitality jobs.”
“The Economic Development Administration plays an important role in supporting community-led economic development strategies designed to boost coronavirus recovery and response efforts,” said Angela Belden Martinez, director of EDA’s Denver Regional Office. “Through this investment, the Nebraska Tourism Commission will hire a tourism recovery coordinator and create and re-establish marketing and advertising campaigns in key parts of the state to foster recovery and resiliency within the tourism industry.”
Gov. Pete Ricketts praised the work of Nebraska Tourism.
“Nebraska Tourism does great work to promote the Good Life as a travel destination,” said Gov. Ricketts. “Thanks to the Department of Commerce for this grant to help Nebraska Tourism spread the word about all there is to see and do in the Cornhusker State. Nebraska is open for business, and we look forward to welcoming visitors to rodeos, parks, fairs, and festivals this summer.”
U.S. Senator Deb Fischer released a statement about the grant saying, “Nebraska’s tourism industry is still recovering from the COVID pandemic. I was proud to vote for the CARES Act in 2020, which provided this federal funding to ensure that visitors can once again enjoy Nebraska’s natural wonders, majestic skies, and historic museums.”
This project is funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136 PDF), which provided EDA with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.