Managing the myriad of tasks and functions to ensure high-quality public services are delivered to communities can be overwhelming and time-consuming for local governments. At the same time, they are constantly being asked to do more with less amid a constantly evolving economic landscape and a shrinking tax base, while also grappling with things like aging infrastructure. For many agencies, the mounting challenges exceed the resources they have available.

There is no quick fix to many of these challenges, and as a result agencies are having to think outside of the box to find solutions. One example of this

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is the pursuit of governmental and non-governmental grant programs. Grant programs can help to provide alternative funding for key projects and programs across a broad range of categories, including those listed below.

  • Arts/Culture
  • Community/Economic Development
  • Environmental Planning/Restoration
  • Community/Social/Human Services
  • Disaster Recovery/Resiliency
  • Transit Oriented Development
  • Downtown Revitalization
  • Historic Preservation
  • Open Space/Parks/Recreation
  • Public Safety
  • Sustainable Energy/Green Infrastructure
  • Transportation Infrastructure

In addition to the broad range of funding categories, we continue to see an unprecedented level of grant funding being made available to local governments. In 2021, we saw the reinstitution of Congressional Appropriations and the passage of the Infrastructure, Investment and Jobs Act, while 2022 ushered in the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Through these federal programs and spending packages, billions in new funding was, and will continue to be, made available to local governments in the form of direct federal grants as well as sub-grants through state agencies.

Despite the broad range of funding categories and increased levels of investment, identifying and applying for grant funding can be an overwhelming, tedious, and time-consuming endeavor. It is for this reason that local governments should ask a few simple questions:

  • Is my organization consistently late at identifying or missing key grant opportunities?
  • Is my staff’s internal pursuit of grants taking focus away from their primary job responsibilities?
  • Is my organization continuing to strike out when applying for certain grants year after year?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then it may be time for your organization to consider seeking external professional grant support. Much like you would hire an auditor to help monitor your organizations fiscal health, an engineer to implement your capital plan, or an attorney to oversee legal matters, hiring a grant consultant to identify and pursue alternative grant funding is another proactive approach to public service at a time when it is needed the most.

With a long history providing grant consulting services on behalf of local governments throughout New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania, we understand the challenges your agency may be facing. It is part of the reason why Millennium Strategies has been able to successfully secure more than $1billion in alternative governmental and non-governmental grant funding on behalf of our local government clients. If you have questions about whether or not your organization should consider hiring a grant consultant or what that engagement might look like, lets setup a time to connect. Wishing you all the best as you continue to plan for the year ahead!