Those involved in the local cannabis industry will have two opportunities to receive funding through the county’s Project Trellis to help their businesses and combat the effect of the war on drugs. In total, more than $1.5 million will be available to fund cannabis projects.
Micro-Grants and Loans
First, the Humboldt County Cannabis Micro-Grant & Loan Advisory Committee (CMGLAC) aka the Project Trellis Committee will be accepting applications for micro-business grants beginning Monday, Oct. 14. The deadline to apply is Dec. 16. The total funding for this cycle is $180,000 which will be divided among selected project proposals. The maximum award for individuals is $10,000 and $50,000 for associations and co-operatives.
The micro-business grant program is one component of Project Trellis and is aimed at providing capital assistance and business resources to Humboldt County cannabis businesses. The application forms, instructions and background information are online at the Project Trellis web page.
Local Equity Program
The second opportunity for funding is for the Local Equity Program (LEP), which is aimed at assisting individuals who were negatively or disproportionately impacted by the criminalization of cannabis. The Humboldt County Administrative Office – Economic Development Division received word on Wednesday that it was awarded a grant for $1,338,683.13 from the State of California for this program. The state had $10 million in funding available through SB 1294, and Humboldt was one of just 10 agencies to receive funding. Humboldt received the third largest award, a clear acknowledgement that Humboldt County was hit disproportionally hard by the War on Drugs.
Economic Development will make another announcement when the application period for funding through the LEP is available. For now, businesses interested in applying for the Micro-Grants and Loans program should visit the Project Trellis web page and submit their application by Dec. 16.
"These two programs represent a major investment by Humboldt County into the success of the local cannabis industry, as well as supporting those in our community who were impacted so hard by the War on Drugs," said Scott Adair, Director of Economic Development. "Combined with the marketing and promotion piece of Project Trellis, which we just put out to RFP (request for proposal), we feel like there is real momentum behind our local industry."
The purpose of Project Trellis is, in part, to bolster the cannabis industry and is comprised of three main programs:
- Micro-business grant program: Aimed at providing capital assistance and business resources to Humboldt County cannabis businesses.
- Marketing and promotion: This initiative is designed to promote Humboldt-grown cannabis as a national and industry brand.
- Local Equity Program: To serve those communities and individuals impacted by the war on drugs, and the implementation of which also serves as part of the qualifying criteria to receive Senate Bill 1294 funding.
Funding for the micro-business grant program will come from local cannabis excise tax revenues, cannabis fines and fees. Applicants must be a Humboldt County based business, cooperative, road association, or nonprofit agency having 75% or more of its operations based in Humboldt County and must be licensed and registered to operate in Humboldt County, whose activities are specific to the cultivation, processing, manufacturing, distribution or retail of cannabis, or whose organization provides support and/or services to the cannabis industry.
In September, Economic Development released a RFP for the marketing and promotion portion of Project Trellis. The purpose of the RFP is to acquire proposals from qualified and full-service marketing agencies and/or marketing consultants for the development of a distinct national and industry “brand” for Humboldt County-grown cannabis and cannabis-related products and services.
Interested parties may contact the County of Humboldt Executive Director Scott Adair, at 707-445-7745 or firstname.lastname@example.org.