The Journal Gazette
Thursday, October 07, 2021 1:34 pm

$1 billion sought by state regional initiatives

State plans to award half that amount

LISA GREEN | The Journal Gazette

Seventeen regions representing all of Indiana's 92 counties are seeking funding for $1 billion -- twice the amount of money the state plans to give -- for initiatives to support economic development, quality of life and related projects.

Gov. Eric J. Holcomb today announced the total of funding requests from the Indiana Regional Economic Acceleration and Development Initiative (READI). The READI budget is $500 million.

Northeast Indiana is seeking funding for 130 projects, which would require $129 million in funding. It submitted a 308-page proposal titled "Growing with Vision." The maximum expected to be granted to any one region is $50 million.

In 2015, northeast Indiana was awarded $42 million in a similar statewide competition for growth and development projects. That plan, called "The Road to One Million," has led to 28 "transformative projects," according to the READI bid the region submitted.

Each region has involved various interest groups ranging from major employers and philanthropists to educational institutions and economic development agencies.

Proposals from regional groups to the state were expected to outline in detail plans to "invest in their growth and prosperity, outlining a series of strategies focused on physical projects and sustainable, multi-year programs to advance quality of place, quality of life, and quality of opportunity," a news release said.

Holcomb said he and Bradley B. Chambers, Indiana's secretary of commerce, are impressed with the "hard work and collaborative energy invested" in the proposals.

“I have no doubt these plans will be the beginning of transformational progress that will impact Hoosiers for generations to come,” the governor said in a statement.

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