Tennessee creates $8M fund to promote rural development

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The state Economic and Community Development Department is creating an $8 million program aimed at promoting projects in rural Tennessee.

The initial $6 million is designated for “shovel-ready” economic development sites, and another $1 million in grants will be available to enhance tourism projects.

The remaining $1 million is targeted at projects that include a rural broadband capacity survey and main street incubators.

Randy Boyd, the head of the state’s economic development agency, also announced the appointment of Amy Blaylock New as the department’s first assistant commissioner for rural development.

Boyd last month launched a new campaign to market the 6.5-square-mile Memphis Regional Megasite to multiple potential investors instead of a single large company in an effort to land tenants for the state-owned site in Haywood County.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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