Uniquely Walhalla Grant Program
Walhalla is a growing community, which blends historical heritage, business growth, a hub for government functions and recreation opportunities for an experience to make living and working here – Uniquely Walhalla.
The City of Walhalla encourages business investment as part of a shared vision for future growth and a merger of planning, implementation, and economic development. The City works to create a sustainable local economy that encourages economic vitality, promotes fiscal integrity, and increases the local standard of living while preserving and enhancing the quality of life of the City of Walhalla.
The Economic Development and Vibrancy Initiative is focused on enhancing the vitality of the community by capitalizing on growth throughout the City and creating a vibrant environment for residents and visitors to enjoy. Additionally, the City seeks to:
– Build professional relationships with businesses in the community to ensure business and job retention;
– Attract high quality jobs and businesses to the City of Walhalla;
– Attract new residential development and residents into the City of Walhalla;
– Create awareness about the Walhalla community to attract visitors and investors.
The City of Walhalla, through its Downtown Development Corporation (DDC), has established the Uniquely Walhalla Grant Program through the Economic Development and Community Vibrancy Initiative. The purpose of the grant program is to identify and provide funding support for projects that promote economic development and community vibrancy in the City of Walhalla. The initiative will award up to four matching grants, each up to $15,000, to business owners, developers, commercial property owners or business start-ups who are committed to starting or expanding developments (both commercial and residential) designed to increase local economic development and community vitality.
Uniquely Walhalla Grant Eligibility and Project Criteria:
1. Projects must be located in and do their work within the City limits of Walhalla.
2. Successful proposals for projects funded by the Uniquely Walhalla Grants should be able to clearly demonstrate how the implementation of the project will benefit the local economy and provide vibrancy to the local community, establishing goals with quantitative benchmarks.
3. Proposals may include building renovations, infrastructure installment, redevelopment or in-fill projects, new and diverse housing opportunities and other innovative economic development activities.
4. Projects will be eligible to receive funding only once.
5. All projects should be implemented within 12 months of receiving grant funding, with the option to extend the implementation window to 18 months, if deemed necessary by the DDC.
6. Grant funding requires a 50% match. Projects should be a minimum of $20,000 (grant match of $10,000). Maximum grant funding is $15,000.
7. Commercial projects should have a business in operation within 24 months of receiving grant funding. If not, the DDC reserves the right to require reimbursement of the grant, up to the full award amount.
8. Residential projects should offer diverse opportunities, including mixed income and/or a variety of housing types.
9. Mixed use projects should offer both residential and commercial opportunities and must be located within the Downtown Business District Overlay.
The selection process will be a competitive process with the DDC selecting a minimum of two commercial recipients and one residential recipient based on a set of criteria established by the DDC and City of Walhalla.
Among the elements, the DDC will consider:
1. Economic Impact: How will the proposed project positively impact the City’s tax base? What is the expected return on investment? Will the proposed project provide additional jobs or housing? Will the business be subject to Hospitality or Accommodations Tax?
2. Need: Will the project address a community need or issue? How will the need be filled by this project?
3. Ability to implement: How feasible is the project? Does the applicant have the capacity (time, funding, people) to implement the project? Does the applicant have a track record of successful projects? How does the applicant plan to implement the project?
4. Sustainability: Will the project be a long-term investment? What is the strategy to keep the project operational or in use? If the project will include continual maintenance, what is the plan to ensure it is maintained? Will future funding be required?
5. Funding: The grant is a 50% matching grant, minimum $10,000 to a maximum of $15,000. Does the applicant have the availability to match the other 50% or more of the total project’s cost?
6. Efficiency: Will the project be implemented within 12 months?
7. Community Impact: How will the proposed project positively impact the local community? Will it be a place the community can visit and interact with (restaurant, store)? Will the project include details to ensure the finished project is attractive and increase the sense of place in Walhalla? Will the project be accessible to the public or draw in both residents and visitors? How will the project enhance the quality of life in Walhalla?
Please submit the completed Uniquely Walhalla Grant Application with the following documents:
1. Project budget, including any other funding sources
2. Brief bio of the person(s) overseeing the project
3. Project timeline with major task implementation highlighted
4. Optional: Letter of support from other agencies or partners that demonstrate the project’s fulfillment of a community need
5. Any other supporting documentation that may be of interest to the DDC in the consideration of the grant request
Only completed application packets will be considered. Applications may be submitted in person at 206 N Church Street, Walhalla or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Finalists may be asked to appear before the DDC to give a brief presentation of their project.
Grant awards will not be distributed to recipients until after the applicant has met with the Community Development Team and obtained an approved zoning permit.
Grant funding may not be used for required permits or licenses.