At the June 2022 Board meeting, the Golden LEAF Board of Directors awarded $5,046,526 in funding to support projects through the second round of the SITE Program and $1,398,657.34 in funding through the Open Grants Program. The Golden LEAF Board awarded $1,706,550 in funding for projects through the Flood Mitigation Program. The Golden LEAF Board also approved $1,750,000 in funding for the North Carolina Community College System to support scholarships as part of the Golden LEAF Scholarship Program.
The SITE Program supports communities in identifying potential sites for economic development and provides funds to enable completion of due diligence on sites already identified or to extend public utilities to or conduct rough grading and clearing of sites for which due diligence has been completed. The three phases of the SITE Program are Identification, Due Diligence, and Development.
The Golden LEAF Foundation Board of Directors awarded $5,046,526 in funding for 13 projects through the Golden LEAF SITE Program in Moore, Wilkes, Stokes, Martin, Surry, Robeson, Cumberland, Duplin, Onslow, Nash, Person, Rutherford, and Columbus counties.
SITE Program – Identification allocates funds to a firm contracted by Golden LEAF to help identify potential industrial sites in a community. Moore, Wilkes, and Stokes counties were selected to receive assistance in this phase.
The Golden LEAF Board awarded $104,650 in funding to support three SITE Program – Due Diligence projects. These projects will receive funding to complete eligible due diligence activities such as environmental assessments, archaeological analyses, and mapping. Organizations receiving SITE Program – Due Diligence support include:
- $29,500 to Martin County Economic Development Corporation for the NC Rail and Commerce Park.
- $39,650 to Surry County for the Westwood Industrial Park.
- $35,500 to Robeson County for the Comtech Park.
For the SITE Program – Development, the Golden LEAF Board awarded $4,896,876 in funding for seven projects that will provide public infrastructure and, for publicly owned sites, clearing and rough grading, to benefit sites that have completed the due diligence necessary to demonstrate that the site is suitable for development. Organizations receiving SITE Program – Due Development support include:
- $937,600 to Cumberland County to clear and grade approximately 30 acres of the 159 Sand Hill Road site.
- $423,500 to the Foundation for Duplin County Industrial and Business Development for clearing and grubbing of a tract within the Duplin County AirPark, adjacent to Duplin County Regional Airport.
- $1,000,000 to Jacksonville-Onslow Economic Development Partnership for clearing, grading, and drainage systems that will yield nearly 40 acres of stormwater-ready sites at Jacksonville Business Park.
- $188,513 to the Town of Nashville for grubbing and clearing of two lots in the Nashville Business Center, design and engineering, and completion of due diligence to develop affordable construction-ready industrial sites.
- $973,750 to Person County to complete due diligence, and clear and grade a 26-acre parcel in the county-owned North Park Site.
- $998,512.50 to Rutherford County Economic Development Corporation for rough grading of two adjacent parcels at RiverStone Business Park.
- $375,000 to the Town of Tabor City for updated due diligence and grading costs for a lot in the Tabor City Industrial Park.
Additionally, the Golden LEAF Board awarded four projects totaling $1,398,657.34 in Open Grants Program funding. These projects will support workforce preparedness and job creation and economic investment in Brunswick, Bladen, Haywood, and Nash counties.
- $200,000 to Brunswick Community College to support expansion of advanced manufacturing training to meet the needs of existing and new employers in the county and region.
- $364,896 to the Town of Elizabethtown to help construct infrastructure in the Elizabethtown Industrial Park, and to perform some site development activities that will facilitate construction of seven commercial buildings and support the location of five businesses, including a new medical clinic, that have committed to Elizabethtown to invest and operate in this section of the industrial park.
- $333,761.34 to Haywood Community College for simulation equipment to help equip the newly constructed Health Education Building, particularly the simulated hospital unit.
- $500,000 to the Town of Middlesex to expand the sewer system for the Middlesex Corporate Centre located in Nash County to support economic growth. The expanded service will serve four sites in the industrial park.
The Golden LEAF Foundation was appropriated $25 million from the State of North Carolina for a Flood Mitigation Program. The Flood Mitigation Program will award funding up to $250,000 per project. Funds may only be awarded to units of local government.
The Golden LEAF Board awarded $1,706,550 in funding to eight projects through the Flood Mitigation Program in Chowan, Pasquotank, Bladen, Harnett, Robeson, Craven, Pender, and Duplin counties.
- $249,300 to the Town of Edenton to replace an existing pipe under Old Hertford Road and downstream piping to relieve hydraulic pressure and reduce the potential for flooding of roads and residential and commercial structures during heavy rain events.
- $100,000 to the City of Elizabeth City to perform necessary assessment and analysis of the drainage basin and stormwater infrastructure and to develop and prioritize the most cost-effective stormwater control measures that will mitigate repetitive flooding of the Dawson-Hunter neighborhood.
- $132,000 to the Town of Elizabethtown to develop a Stormwater Master Plan that includes updating the town’s asset inventory, field data collection, modeling of existing watersheds, development of concept plans, and a summary report that will include recommendations to address frequent flooding in the central subbasin, the eastern subbasin, and along Glenwood Drive in the western part of Elizabethtown.
- $225,250 to the Town of Lillington for engineering expenses to map Lillington’s entire stormwater system and perform detailed analysis on ten areas that are most prone to intense flooding to identify recommendations that address those flooding issues.
- $250,000 to the City of Lumberton to upsize the capacity of stormwater infrastructure at the juncture of Linkhaw Road and the railroad to mitigate flooding that occurs in this area during any 2-inch or greater rain event.
- $250,000 to the Town of River Bend to implement Phase II recommendations from an engineering study and analysis of frequent flooding in River Bend, specifically in the Channel Run Subdivision. Phase II includes regrading and re-sloping of natural drainage infrastructure throughout the community to ensure that water flows efficiently and effectively out of the area.
- $250,000 to the Town of Surf City to install a catch basin with drainpipe to convey stormwater to a new infiltration chamber system that collects and releases stormwater back into native soils. The project addresses insufficient stormwater infrastructure that causes flooding in the 2200 block of South Shore Drive that obstructs passage of vehicles, including public safety vehicles.
- $250,000 to the Town of Wallace to install sheet piling and rip rap along the bank of an existing canal to stop erosion, improve the transport of stormwater, and significantly reduce flooding along the canal.
The North Carolina Community College System was awarded $1.75 million by the Golden LEAF Board to support scholarships for students from rural, economically distressed counties to attend participating North Carolina community colleges. Curriculum students can receive up to $2,250 per year, and continuing education students can receive up to $1,850 per year. The Golden LEAF Foundation has awarded funds for scholarships to students attending North Carolina community colleges since 2000.
Since 1999, Golden LEAF has funded 2,011 projects totaling $1.18 billion supporting the mission of advancing economic opportunity in North Carolina’s rural, tobacco-dependent, and economically distressed communities.