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Ford Makes Major Investment in OHio

Ohio Department of Development Small Business Update
Highlights in this week's Small Business Update:
  • $15 million will help Ohio meat processors improve production
  • New IMAP round opens focused on broadband and 5G credentials
  • Companies should register now for the 2022 Ohio Business Matchmaker
  • Next TechCred round opens July 1, businesses can prepare now
  • Business certifications now avaialbe through Development's website
A man charges his electric vehicle.
Ford to Add 1,800 Jobs at Ohio Plant
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Lt. Governor Jon Husted, and JobsOhio joined representatives from the Ford Motor Company last week to announce that Ford is investing $1.5 billion into Lorain County at the Ford Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake to assemble an all-new commercial electric vehicle (EV). This investment will create 1,800 new hourly jobs.
“The ingenuity and talent of Ohio’s automotive workforce are second to none, and Ford’s investment in Avon Lake will play an essential role in growing the EV space,” Governor DeWine said. “Ford has been a partner in Ohio for generations, and its confidence in the Ford Ohio Assembly Plant operations secures EV operations in Lorain County that will be critical for decades to come.”
In addition to the 1,800 new jobs to make the new commercial EV at the Ford Ohio Assembly Plant, the expanded facility will continue producing Ford’s E-series van, medium-duty trucks, and Super Duty chassis cabs. Ford also announced an additional 90 jobs and a $100 million investment between its Lima Engine Plant and Sharonville Transmission plants.
“There are many wonderful aspects to a day like today, but the special news for Northeast Ohio is that there will be 1,800 new, good-paying jobs with health care benefits and the higher quality of life and job security that comes along with it,” Lt. Governor Husted said. “Governor DeWine and I are glad Ford chose Ohio to help manufacture this EV vehicle, continuing the region’s extensive legacy in automotive innovation.”
Construction on Ford's Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake is expected to begin later this year; assembly on the commercial electric vehicle is expected to begin in mid-decade.
The Ford Motor Company, DeWine-Husted Administration, the Ohio Department of Development, the City of Avon Lake, Lorain County, state and local elected officials, and Ohio’s Congressional delegation all collaborated with JobsOhio to bring the project to Avon Lake.
Ford operates facilities in Avon Lake, Brook Park, Lima, and Sharonville and has more than 7,000 employees in the state.
To support the expansion of the Ford Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake, the Ohio Tax Credit Authority will consider a tax credit at a future meeting, and JobsOhio also plans to provide grant assistance.
To read more about the announcement, click here.
A 5G cell tower.
Next IMAP Round Focuses on Broadband and 5G
Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted, who serves as Director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation (OWT), this week announced a broadband and 5G-focused Individualized Microcredential Assistance Program (IMAP) round.
This is the third round of the initiative, which helps those who are low income, partially unemployed, or totally unemployed participate in a training program and receive a technology-focused credential at no cost. The focus on broadband and 5G credentials is part of a larger effort by OWT and BroadbandOhio to grow the workforce needed to expand broadband access and 5G in Ohio.
Eligible credentials include Fiber Optics, Telecommunications Tower Technician, Fiber to Any Antenna (FTAA), and the 5G Readiness program. Institutions that currently offer these credentials are eligible to apply, as well as institutions that intend to launch a relevant program within six months from July 1. Training providers who receive awards will be reimbursed up to $3,000 for each completed technology-focused credential issued and up to $250,000 per provider.
“We are working to ensure that everyone can participate in the modern economy, education, and health care system through broadband access, and to do that, the infrastructure has to be built from the ground up by skilled workers,” Lt. Governor Husted said. “These short-term credentials can be earned quickly and will provide excellent employment opportunities for Ohioans to make an average of $50,000 per year or more.”
“As we expand our broadband and 5G footprint across Ohio, we will need the workers who can make that happen,” said Lydia Mihalik, Director of the Ohio Department of Development, which administers the program. “The focus of this IMAP round will help more Ohioans enter the workforce of the future and put them on the path for success.”
Lt. Governor Husted also announced that four schools in Southeast Ohio will partner to offer a Certified Fiber Optic Technician program. Washington County Career Center, Mid-East Career & Technology Centers, Belmont-Harrison Career Centers, and Noble Local School District worked with local industry partners to secure a donated mobile trailer that will be shared among the institutions. The schools will set a schedule for each institution to offer the program for six to eight-week intervals, and then the mobile trailer will move to the next institution for another cohort.
Since the strategy launched in September, Ohio has announced three new programs across the state. These programs are located at career centers, colleges, and universities, and will prepare participants for a variety of jobs in the telecommunications industry.
Today’s announcements represent additional progress related to broadband expansion that builds upon efforts by Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted to expand and enhance high-speed internet access for businesses and families throughout Ohio.
The “Strengthening Ohio’s Broadband & 5G Workforce” Strategy can be found on the BroadbandOhio website.
The IMAP application period for training providers began Thursday, June 9, and runs through June 27. For more information on IMAP, click here.
A worker packs ham into packages.
Governor Awards $15M to Help Food Supply Chain
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted last week announced additional state support to help strengthen the local meat supply chain and reduce reliance on out-of-state meat processors.
Seventy-five Ohio meat processors will receive grants totaling approximately $15 million to help them expand capacity and meet the growing demand for meat processing services.
The awards are the second round of funding offered through the Ohio Meat Processing Grant Program. Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted, in partnership with the Ohio General Assembly, increased the amount of funding available through this program from $10 million to $25 million in April after the need for grants far exceeded the initial funding amount.
“I’m happy that we’ve now been able to help every qualifying meat processor who applied for assistance,” Governor DeWine said. “Meat processors are essential to ensuring that our grocery stores and restaurants have protein available to feed Ohio families.”
“Meat processors have struggled with the supply chain issues that have also impacted other industries,” Lt. Governor Husted said. “These grants will help meat processors increase productivity, which means they can increase the supply and lower costs for the consumer.”
The DeWine-Husted Administration prioritized the creation of the Ohio Meat Processing Grant Program in the state's 2022-2023 operating budget, which was passed by the Ohio General Assembly last year. Grant funding will be used to implement processing efficiencies, expand or construct facilities at existing sites, assist in training and certification, and improve harvest services.
Each company will receive a grant of up to $250,000, with half of the funds disbursed before projects are started and the other half awarded after the companies show that the initial funds were spent on eligible costs.
The Ohio Department of Development administered the Ohio Meat Processing Grant Program in collaboration with the Ohio Department of Agriculture.
“We are working to get these funds into the hands of processors as soon as possible,” Ohio Department of Development Director Lydia Mihalik said. “Ohio’s meat processors are eager to implement their plans to improve operations, and we want to help them get started quickly.”
“Ohio’s meat and poultry processors are a critical component of Ohio’s food and agriculture industry,” Ohio Department of Agriculture Director Dorothy Pelanda said. “These funds will help our processors do a more efficient job at what they do best – provide safe and wholesome products for our consumers.”
The grants announced last week total $14,985,237 and will be awarded to meat processors in 45 of Ohio’s 88 counties. Including funds awarded in the first round, meat processors in 53 Ohio counties received grants totaling $24,978,289.
To see lists of grant recipients and a county map, click here.
Ohio Business Matchmaker logo
Register Now for the 2022 Ohio Business Matchmaker
The Ohio Business Matchmaker gives small businesses the opportunity to meet with dozens of government agencies and large prime contractors that have billions of dollars in contracts coming up.
The largest small business-to-government contracting event in the state will be July 13 and 14 in the Nutter Center on the campus of Wright State University in Dayton.
Since 2006, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Ohio Department of Development have partnered to connect suppliers to city, county, state, and federal agencies, and large prime contractors seeking to buy from small businesses, including MBE/EDGE, minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned, 8(a), and HUBZone-certified businesses.
The past two years, the Matchmaker has been held in a virtual format, but this year, it will be back in person. The registration price is $130, and it will cost $175 to register the day of the event.
For more information and to register, visit
In addition, a series of webinars began June 1 to help businesses make the most of the Matchmaker. Information about the webinars, including recordings of previous webinars and links to register for upcoming sessions, is available at
Ohio TechCred
Round 15 of TechCred Will Open July 1
Businesses can prepare now for the opening of the next round of the Ohio TechCred program.
Round 15 will open July 1, and applications will be accepted until July 29.
The March round of TechCred marked the 13th round of the program. With the March round approvals, a total of 1,822 Ohio employers have been approved for funding through the TechCred program, supporting the earning of 40,824 tech-focused credentials by employees. Results of the May round will be announced soon.
TechCred will be open for applications on a bimonthly basis for the remainder of 2022:
  • Round 16: Sept. 1-30
  • Round 17: Nov. 1-30
Businesses with employees who have completed their approved TechCred training should complete the reimbursement process at
Learn more about the program at
A woman uses her laptop.
Business Certifications Now Available at Development Website
Businesses that are seeking state certifications can now go to the Ohio Department of Development (Development) website to begin the process.
Applications for certifications have moved to Development from the Ohio Department of Administrative Services. Information about certifications is available at
In addition, companies seeking to diversify their supplier or subcontractor lists can visit the site to search for companies certified as Minority Business Enterprises (MBE), Women-Owned Business Enterprises (WBE), Veteran-Friendly Business Enterprises (VBE), or Encouraging Diversity, Growth and Equity (EDGE) businesses.
The transfer is part of the DeWine-Husted Administration’s plan to make Development’s Minority Business Development Division a one-stop-shop for minority-owned, women-owned, and disadvantaged businesses. Certifications, access to capital, and business advising services all are now available through the Minority Division.
State certifications can help businesses land contracts with government agencies and large prime contractors. More information and links to applications are available at
A construction crew works on a new mixed-use building.
State Support Will Help Redevelop Ohio Neighborhoods
$100 million in state support is now available as part of the second round of the Transformational Mixed-Used Development Program.
The Ohio Department of Development is accepting applications for Fiscal Year 2023 projects. The program provides a tax credit for major mixed-use developments in Ohio to help finance new construction and/or improve vacant buildings.
In March, Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted announced the first round of support awarded as part of the program, involving 13 projects that are expected to result in more than $2.1 billion in new Ohio payroll and $1.4 billion in new investments across the state.
Qualifying developments must impact the economic and social well-being of the immediate site and surrounding area in a way that influences long-term change in the area. Development properties eligible for the tax credit must include at least two mixed uses or three if one mixed-use is a parking structure.
Eligible costs include land acquisition, building acquisition, demolition, site improvement, and new construction of the site.
The Ohio Tax Credit Authority approves and awards funding for the program, up to $100 million per fiscal year. Developments applying for the program will be separated into two funding categories: major city and general. Major city projects must be located within 10 miles of a corporation limit of Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo, Akron, and Dayton. Not more than $80 million per fiscal year will be approved for major city projects and not more than $40 million will be approved for a single development.
The program application is available on the program website. Applications must be received by 4 p.m. Friday, July 8, 2022, to be considered. To read about projects receiving awards in the first round, click here.
Questions regarding the program can be sent to
A woman in a small machine shop.
Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses Get Support
More than $4.33 million in new loans have been approved to date through the Ohio Department of Development (Development) to help 60 minority- and women-owned businesses grow and expand in Ohio.
The new Women's Business Enterprise Loan Program and Ohio Micro-Enterprise Loan Program were priority initiatives of the DeWine-Husted Administration and included in the 2022-2023 operating budget, which was passed in June by the Ohio General Assembly.
The loans are administered by Development’s Minority Business Development Division. To date, $2,297,012 in Women’s Business Enterprise Loans have been approved for 11 companies, and $2,035,511 Ohio Micro-Loans have been approved for 49 companies. More than $5.6 million remains available in the loan programs.
The programs:
  • Women’s Business Enterprise Loan Program: These loans will be offered at or below market rate and currently are up to 3%. The minimum loan amount is $45,000 up to a maximum of $500,000. Loans will be repaid within 10 years for equipment and machinery and 15 years for owner-occupied real estate. Businesses must be 51% ownership and control by women or be certified by the state of Ohio or Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) as a Women-owned Business Enterprise (WBE).
  • Ohio Micro-Loan Program: These loans will have a 0% interest rate. The minimum loan is $10,000 up to a maximum of $45,000. Loans will be repaid within five years for permanent working capital and seven years for equipment. Businesses must be certified by the state of Ohio as a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) or a Women-owned Business Enterprise (WBE).
These programs join four other capital programs offered by Development through its Minority Division: the Ohio Minority Business Bonding Program, the Ohio Minority Business Direct Loan Program, the Collateral Enhancement Program, and the Ohio Capital Access Program.
Information about the loans, including program guidelines and fact sheets, can be found online at Minority.Ohio.Gov. To start the application process, click here.
Businesses also can reach out to a Minority Business Assistance Center near them for help with the application process and assistance with business planning, access to capital, and state business certifications. For more information about the MBAC network, visit MBAC.Development.Ohio.Gov.
Ohio Means Jobs Can Help Businesses Find Workers
Businesses that are looking for workers can find help at The website helps job seekers find work, and it also can help businesses find their next employee. The site now has more than 2.2 million resumes posted by people looking for a new job.
In addition, the Employer page on the website provides other resources, such as tips on hiring veterans, people with disabilities, and restored citizens. currently has more than 248,000 jobs posted, including more than 147,000 that pay more than $50,000 per year. More than 3,800 internship opportunities also are available.
To find the OhioMeansJobs center near you, visit and select “FIND A JOB CENTER” at the bottom of the page or call 1-888-296-7541.
US Small Business Administration logo
Paycheck Protection Loan Forgiveness Still Available
Businesses that received loans through the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) are encouraged to apply for loan forgiveness.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is no longer accepting PPP applications after providing $798 billion in economic relief to small businesses and nonprofits. Loan recipients still can apply for loan forgiveness, but deadlines may already have passed for some recipients. For more information, click here.
Information about the SBA’s relief efforts can be found at
A clinician administers a vaccine to a older patient
Quick Links to COVID Data and Vaccinations  
For more information on Ohio's response to COVID-19, visit or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.
man using a laptop in a home office
We’re Here to Help!
The Ohio Department of Development has many resources to help business owners make it through the current crisis and prepare for a strong future. Here are some of the resources, and most of them are offered at no cost to businesses.

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Follow Us on Social Media
Development is using its social media channels to raise awareness of programs and assistance available through the state and federal governments. We urge small businesses to reach out to Ohio Small Business Development Centers and Minority Business Assistance Centers around the state for help in applying for federal assistance and to plan for the future.
Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
For more information
Visit Coronavirus.Ohio.Gov/BusinessHelp or email BusinessHelp@Development.Ohio.Gov.
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Ohio Department of Development | BusinessHelp.Ohio.Gov

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