The Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments Economic Development Department is an integral part of the BCD Region’s fiscal revitalization. It has taken part in many of the region’s most high-profile economic ventures. Its projects, which range from equipment financing to asbestos removal, can be credited with the creation or retention of thousands of jobs.
The BCDCOG is dedicated to improving the quality of life in the region by developing strategies for diverse job creation and economic growth. It partners with economic development agencies in the region and provides them support with Economic Development Administration funding.
The BCDCOG regional Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) is required by EDA to maintain eligibility for annual planning funds. The CEDS is a regional planning process focusing on economic development and results in a five-year strategic plan for regional economic development updated annually. Each year the Strategies priority projects for EDA funding are updated to determine projects that may be eligible for funding, projects that have been completed, and any new information on projects.
The department has three primary tools to assist economic development: Economic Development Administration funds; Community Development Block Grants; and its own Revolving Loan Fund.
The Council of Governments’ Economic Development Department is also involved in applying for and distributing funds allocated by the Community Development Block Grant Program. The department picks up where the Council of Government’s Community Development Department stops by focusing on Community Development Block Grant funds specifically set aside for enhancing employment opportunities, especially for the poor. Like community development projects, CDBG economic development projects must meet one of the three national objectives. They must:
- Benefit low-and-moderate income persons
- Aid in the prevention or elimination of slums or blight
- Meet other urgent needs that pose a serious threat to a community’s health or welfare and cannot be resolved through other financial means
- CEDS Document – can be found at BDCCOG’s Website
- Revolving Loan Fund page
- Ready SC: Ready SC website
- US Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA): Economic Development Administration website
Kathryn Basha, Planning Director