The U.S. Department of the Treasury has awarded $1.8 million to Brunswick-based Coastal Enterprises Inc. to expand its community lending and economic development work.

CEI was one of 196 community development financial institutions, or CDFIs, across the country that received $185.7 million in grants and loans from Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund, according to a news release from CEI. The awards, based on a competitive application process, have enabled CDFIs to increase lending and investment activity in low-income and economically distressed communities across the nation since the program was established in 1994.

Over 80 percent of CEI’s lending activity targets low-income people and communities, through loans that support low-income entrepreneurs and business owners as well as companies that create jobs, affordable housing units, childcare slots, and health care for people and regions that qualify as low-income. Since 1997, CEI has received a total of 14 awards from the CDFI Fund.

With Wednesday’s announcement, the CDFI Fund crossed the $2 billion threshold in collective investments to CDFIs through the CDFI and Native American CDFI assistance programs, bringing capital to low-income, distressed and underserved communities and areas of persistent poverty. A total of 457 applications was received, requesting more than $675 million under this round of the CDFI program.

J. Craig Anderson can be contacted at 791-6390 or at:

Twitter: jcraiganderson

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.