MN Businesses and Nonprofits Invited to Apply for Promise Act Grant Funding

The following is shared with permission of The Northwest Minnesota Foundation.

The Northwest Minnesota Foundation will soon be accepting grant applications from small businesses and nonprofits to invest in existing operations or planned growth.

Through the PROMISE Act (Providing Resources and Opportunity and Maximizing Investments in Striving Entrepreneurs), created and funded by the Minnesota Legislature, the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, in partnership with the Department of Employment and Economic Development, has been awarded $2.3 million to disperse one-time grants up to $50,000 to businesses and qualified nonprofits. Businesses can use funds for working capital to support payroll expenses, rent or mortgage payments, utility bills, equipment, and other similar expenses that occur in the regular course of business.

The PROMISE Act program is intended to drive fair economic recovery by boosting small, rural, and minority-owned businesses, which face the largest barriers to accessing capital and resources.

The application process will consist of two steps:

  1. Applicants complete an application to assess eligibility. All businesses and nonprofits that believe they are eligible may complete the application.
  2. If deemed eligible through the application, qualifying businesses and nonprofits will be invited to apply. The grant application window will be open no later than April 1, and will be open until April 30.

NMF expects more applications than there is funding available. Not all applicants can expect to receive funding.

This is the first of two rounds of the PROMISE Act grant program; the second round will be announced after July 1. Any awardees from the first round will be ineligible to receive a grant in the second round.

Priority will be given to businesses and nonprofits who received $10,000 or less in previous financial assistance from state pandemic relief programs, and who meet the definition of financial hardship by showing a 10 percent decline in gross revenue or a decrease in net income from 2021 to 2022, as shown on tax returns.

Eligible applications will be businesses with $750,000 or less in gross revenue that are located in the Northwest Minnesota Foundation’s service area, which includes Red Lake Nation, White Earth Nation, and 12 counties (Beltrami, Clearwater, Hubbard, Kittson, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, and Roseau).

If your business is located outside this service area you can go here to learn more about the availability of Promise Act Grant in other communities.

For details on the grant process and how to apply, please visit  If you have any questions or need assistance completing the application, please email or call Mic McCrory at [email protected] or 218-558-5325 to be connected with a consultant.