EDA: $6 Million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance Invested to Build Nursing School and Expand Biomedical Research Facility in Texas

Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding $6 million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to help the state of Texas prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.

“President Biden is focused on getting Americans back to work as we build back better from the pandemic,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. “These EDA investments will provide state-of-the-art workforce training for nurses and create good-paying jobs in biomedical research right here in Texas.”

“The Economic Development Administration is committed to supporting community-led strategies designed to create economic opportunity and jobs,” said Dennis Alvord, Acting Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “These EDA investments will construct the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Nursing in Pharr to provide training opportunities for nursing students and expand a biomedical research facility in San Antonio to create a stronger, more resilient regional economy.

“Our hardworking nurses and biomedical researchers have been pivotal throughout our fight against COVID-19 and in our efforts to save lives,” said Governor Greg Abbott. “I thank the Economic Development Administration for investing in Texans and our San Antonio and Pharr communities to provide workforce training opportunities for nurses and create critical jobs in the biomedical research field. Even during challenging times such as the pandemic, Texas has continued to lead and this investment to create and retain hundreds of good-paying jobs will help us build an even brighter future for the Lone Star State.”

“While Texans persevere as COVID-19 wreaks havoc on our state, we must take steps to ensure that our communities are equipped to weather the storm,” said Senator John Cornyn. “I applaud this announcement and will continue to do everything I can to make economic growth across Texas a high priority.”

“This historic investment underscores our commitment to addressing future pandemics and increasing health care access in the 15th District of Texas,” said Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15). “I am proud to have supported the CARES Act to provide relief to the American people. I will continue to work with our federal partners and local leaders to secure additional resources to address nursing shortages in South Texas.”

The EDA investments announced today are:

  • Texas Biomedical, San Antonio, Texas, will receive a $4 million EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to expand the Non-Human Animal Facility (NHP-ALFA) for biomedical research. The project, to be matched with $6 million in local funds, is expected to create 176 jobs, retain 350 jobs, and generate $4 million in private investment.
  • The city of Pharr, Texas, will receive a $2 million EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to build the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Nursing to address nursing shortages and allow for the region to prepare for, and best respond to, COVID-19 and future health related issues. The project, to be matched with $24 million in local investment, is expected to create 750 jobs, and generate $30 million in private investment.

This project is funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136 PDF), which provided EDA with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation’s regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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