Women ensuring factory operations are running smoothly

Thanks to a $50 million funding allocation from the CARES Act, the NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership can now provide some U.S. manufacturers with much-needed relief.

COVID Financial Management

How the CARES Act and MEPs Can Help Small U.S. Manufacturers

  • Ginny Veit
  • 6/30/2020

Key insights

  • The NIST MEP network serves small U.S. manufacturers by providing access to much-needed resources.
  • NIST received a $50 million funding allocation under the CARES Act.
  • Funding will be allocated among the MEP centers in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.
  • CARES Act funding will be distributed to the MEP centers via an application process.

Want to take advantage of CARES Act funding?

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The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recently received a $50 million funding allocation under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This funding will be allocated among the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program centers in all 50 states and Puerto Rico, and is designed to help manufacturers respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

NIST MEP is a national network that serves small U.S. manufacturers by providing access to professionals who understand manufacturers’ needs. MEP centers provide companies with resources to:

  • Enhance growth
  • Improve productivity
  • Reduce costs
  • Expand capacity

CARES Act funding will be distributed to the MEP centers via an application process. The amount of funding allocated to an MEP will be based on the number of manufacturers in its market. For example, the Ohio Development Services Agency received a $2.3 million award to help Ohio manufacturers respond to COVID-19 challenges.

The $50 million in CARES Act funding allows MEP centers to:

  • Help manufacturers recover from workforce and supply chain interruptions
  • Apply for private insurance claims and disaster loans from the Small Business Administration (SBA)
  • Access resources at the federal, state, and local levels
  • Assess the operating needs of manufacturers
  • Scout for manufacturers that can produce critically needed medical equipment and supplies
  • Organize peer-to-peer manufacturing councils

Manufacturers can also take advantage of the opportunity to receive no-cost assessments to identify challenges, expand internal and third-party report training, access cybersecurity evaluations, and obtain other services that are provided by their local MEP.

How we can help

We’re dedicated to helping you navigate the new and complex world of pandemic-related relief funding. If you have questions about funding eligibility, how to apply for relief, or strategies for reporting, our team can lend a hand.

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