Metro Detroit lands $2.8 million in federal earmarks

Business development in Metro Detroit is getting a little venture capital from Uncle Sam. The recently passed federal Omnibus bill includes $2.784 million in earmarks for regional business development.

Omnibus is short for an Omnibus Appropriations Act, which is basically a budget bill that Congress passes each year. These are notorious for earmarks (federal dollars set aside by members of Congress for projects in their districts) which make up a fraction of the overall bill. What some talking heads like to decry as pork often turns out to be valued funds for getting stuff done outside the beltway.

These get-stuff-done funds include:

  • $100,000 for a micro business incubator at Cleary University
  • $73,693 for the Detroit Creative Business Corridor
  • $343,900 for business retention and attraction programs at the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation
  • $385,000 for the Macomb County Business Accelerator
  • $225,000 for an entrepreneurship center on the Oakland campus of Wayne State University
  • $245,643 for an ex-offender Entrepreneurship Program at the United Way for Southeastern Michigan
  • $245,643 for a telecommunications portal and logistics center at the Aerotropolis
  • $167,676 for the small business clinic at Wayne State University Law School
  • $285,000 for planning and reconstruction of an international business center for business incubation at Automation Alley in Troy
  • $285,000 for the DREAMS teacher training initiative at Eastern Michigan University
  • $333,000 for curriculum development for an associate of applied science degree in energy management at Macomb Community College in Warren
  • $95,000 for the Institute of Radio Frequency Electronics and Nanoelectronics at Oakland University in Rochester

Source: Offices of senators Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow
Writer: Jon Zemke