USDA Investments Support Small and Emerging Rural Businesses in Guam

Tim W. O'Connell
Tiyan, Guam
Western Pacific
Release Date
Oct 24, 2014

USDA Rural Development State Director for Hawaii Chris Kanazawa today announced the Guam Hotel & Restaurant Association (GHRA) received a $50,000 grant to support small and emerging rural businesses enterprise in Guam.

"These grants are part of the Obama administration's ongoing effort to create wealth and job opportunities by ensuring that strategic investments are made in rural America," said Kanazawa. "Small businesses drive community revitalization by providing products and services to local residents. Projects like this spur important economic development and strengthen communities across the nation."

The investments announced today, through USDA’s Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) program, promote the development of small and emerging businesses in rural areas. RBEGs may also be used to help fund distance learning networks and employment-related adult education programs. Eligible applicants include local public entities, private non-profit corporations and federally recognized Indian Tribes.

"GHRA is deeply humbled and grateful for the funding to allow the organization to continue providing workforce development programs, training and education to its more than 300 members in the tourism industry," said Mary P. Rhodes, President of GHRA.  "GHRA has been a non-profit organization for more than 40 years on Guam and the RBEG program is essential to the success of its efforts in meeting its mission."

"We are extremely pleased GHRA received this RBEG award," said Joe Diego, Area Director for the Western Pacific. "The program has limited funding and is highly competitive on a nationwide basis, but GHRA did an excellent job in structuring an application that was in line with the objectives of the grant program. As a result, existing and potential businesses small businesses on Guam will now have the resources to make well-informed decisions about their businesses."

Since the beginning of the Obama Administration, the RBEG program has helped create or save more than 90,000 rural jobs, provided more than $54 million in economic development assistance, improved manufacturing capability, expanded health care and educational facilities, and has either expanded or helped establish more than 3,200 economic development projects.