On December 3o, 2022, President Biden signed a $1.7 trillion spending bill into law, $200 million of which will go toward the RECOMPETE Pilot Program with the Economic Development Administration (EDA).
This pilot program targets areas of low employment across the country, which overlap heavily with rural communities, to invest in economic development planning and strategy implementation.
Unlike many federal programs, the RECOMPETE Pilot Program is built to be flexible – with eligible expenses ranging from physical infrastructure to childcare costs to job retention programs – and long term – while the pilot promises funding for at least two years, the full program may provide funding for ten years at a time.
This pilot program is embedded in a second initiative passed last year in the CHIPS and Science Act – the Regional Technology and Innovation Hubs. This program does promise to reach rural communities, but some feel a guarantee is still needed to ensure RECOMPETE will include rural, distressed communities.