WILLMAR – Ridgewater College and the Lower Sioux Indian Community each received $1.5 million in grants from the Minnesota Department of Jobs and Economic Development.
Targeted Community Capital Project Grants are competitive grants intended to fund projects that improve access to economic development, education, or the workforce or to the underserved or economically disadvantaged. The money comes from $18 million authorized by the Legislative Assembly to fund the projects.
Funding was to be distributed equitably between rural and urban projects. Grants totaling more than $173 million have been received by the department, and the funding has funded 11% of applications, according to a DEED press release.
The grants were awarded after extensive review by agency staff and community members, the statement said.
Ridgewater College in Willmar will receive $1.5 million to add a 300-by-200-foot truck driving range and gravel parking area to expand the college’s commercial driver’s license training program. The space will allow more students to learn skills and obtain a license to obtain their license.
The $1.5 million grant for the Lower Sioux Community in Morton will help create a 20,000 square foot campus to expand the community’s hemp growing, processing and home building facilities. The goal is to help develop a diversified and stable “microeconomy” to provide the tribal nation with jobs, reliable incomes and skills training.