State Announces $50 Million in Funding to Advance Economic Development Pilot Projects

The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR), Labor & Workforce Development Agency (Labor Agency), and Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) are excited to announce the availability of up to $50 million in pilot project grants as part of the Community Economic Resilience Fund (CERF).

The Economic Development Pilot will fund projects that have already emerged from existing regional processes or plans and are ready for implementation. This funding opportunity is a recognition of the ongoing efforts of communities across California working to build a more inclusive and equitable economy for all. Regions will be able to showcase innovative projects that advance the goals of CERF. This SFP fulfills the requirement of Senate Bill 162 that the program “provide a small initial tranche of funding for economic diversification pilots with demonstrable high road elements in those regions already engaged in economic recovery and transition planning.” These projects will align with the high road focus of the program and will demonstrate potential uses of CERF Implementation Phase funding.

Proposals must be received by 3 p.m. on Monday, February 13, 2023. An informational webinar will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, January 18, 2023. Preregistration is required. For registration information, please email a request to by January 18, 2023. The EDD encourages applicants to submit a notice of intent to apply to by 5 p.m. on January 23, 2023. To view this SFP, visit the EDD Workforce Development Solicitations for Proposals webpage.

CERF was created by Senate Bill 162 and is administered by an interagency leadership team that includes OPR, GO-Biz, and the Labor Agency. California Governor Gavin Newsom’s 2021-22 Budget included $600 million in General Fund for CERF to ensure that California’s economic recovery creates high-quality, accessible jobs and helps build resilience to the effects of climate change and other global disruptions impacting the state’s diverse regional economies.

As part of CERF’s initial planning phase, 13 economic development entities known as High Road Transition Collaboratives will receive $5 million each to develop roadmaps, including a strategy and recommended series of investments, for their region. Following this planning phase, the program’s implementation phase will begin in 2023 and provide $500 million to fund projects identified by the High Road Transition Collaboratives. This Economic Development Pilot Program is the first step in the implementation process.