October 25, 2004

PRESCOTT, Ontario - The Grenville Community Futures Development Corporation (GCFDC) is pleased with today’s announcement of the launch of the Eastern Ontario Development Fund (EODF), a $10 million Federal Government investment into the development of the small town/rural economy of Eastern Ontario.  The EODF was announced earlier today in Cobourg by the Honourable Mauril Bélanger, Deputy Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister responsible for Eastern Ontario, and the Honourable Paul Macklin, Member of Parliament for Northumberland– Quinte West, on behalf of the Honourable Joe Comuzzi, Minister of State (FedNor) with GCFDC Executive Director, Heather Lawless, in attendance representing GCFDC.
The EODF will fund the delivery of a variety of programs and services, to support community economic development and business growth.  Priority areas for the funds will include business development, access to capital, skills development, retention and attraction of youth, community capacity building, and local community economic development initiatives.
GCFDC has worked collaboratively with the 14 other Eastern Ontario CFDCs - from Keswick to Renfrew to Hawkesbury - and with local politicians and community partners, to make the case for a Federal commitment to a regional economic development investment in Eastern Ontario.  “We are thrilled with today’s announcement, and with the opportunity to provide enhanced economic development programs and services in Grenville County,” says Renata Kimmerly, GCFDC Chair.  “The Grenville County community will benefit greatly from today’s announced funding.”
Plans are to deliver EODF programming through the existing Network of 15 Federally funded CFDCs throughout Eastern Ontario.  The CFDCs are community-driven organizations that have earned a reputation for effective, accountable, and responsible delivery of Federal programs.  In the last five years, Eastern Ontario CFDCs have successfully invested close to $50 million in the Eastern Ontario economy, through their business loans program and business counseling activities, leading to the creation or maintenance of over 5000 jobs.
“The Grenville CFDC has been supporting businesses and community economic development initiatives in Grenville County for close to 15 years,” says Heather Lawless, Executive Director of GCFDC.  “We look forward to having access to the additional resources and programs of the EODF, to strengthen local business competitiveness and support local economic renewal growth.”

For more information, please contact:
Heather Lawless, GCFDC Executive Director at 613-925-4275 ext. 21