Economic & Community Development

The First Tennessee Development District provides economic and community development services to its eight-county region. Through grant writing, the District assists communities in obtaining funds. Since 1989, the District has assisted communities with funding of 586 grant and loan projects in the amount of $184 million. For the 2013-2014 fiscal year, the District assisted communities with 17 projects totaling $5.9 million. In addition, seven business loans were also issues totaling $550,140. 

Economic Development

The FTDD has completed several economic development grant applications on behalf of municipalities and counties in order to provide job opportunities. Any economic development infrastructure project involves several key people, including a mayor or county mayor, economic development professionals, funding agency representatives, company representatives, and engineers.

Infrastructure funding programs include the Appalachian Regional Commission, Tennessee Small Cities Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), TDEC Clean Tennessee Energy Grant (CTEG), Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), Transportation Alternatives (TA), Tennessee Department of Transportation Multi Modal (TDOT-MM) Local Parks Recreation Fund (LPRF), Recreation Trails Program (RTP), Tennessee Recreation Initiative Program (TRIP), Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDOA), and Tennessee Historic Commission (THC).

The following economic development projects were funded during the past year:




Greeneville Eastview Park Splash Pad LPRF
Johnson City Rotary Park Boundless Playground LPRF
Hancock County Treadway Water Line, Phase II ARC
Kingsport Eastman Sewer line Improvements ARC
Greene County Rural Resources Healthy Food Project ARC
Johnson City Keystone Dental Care, Low Income Oral Health ARC
Carter County WRRWA Water Line Rehab CDBC
Greeneville Water Treatment Plant Clearwell CDBC
Mountain City Wastewater Treatment Plant Improvements CDBC
Mosheim Sewer System Improvements CDBC
Mount Carmel Sewer System Improvements CDBC
Sneedville Water System Improvements CDBC
Erwin Downtown Connector Trail TA
Mosheim Pottertown Road Park Walking Trail RTP
Johnson County Emergency Operations Center CDBG-D
Elizabethon Tweetsie Trail Road Crossing Safety Improvements TDOT
Mountain City Highway 67 Sidewalk Improvements TDOT

Community Development

The District has completed several community development grant applications on behalf of municipalities and counties. Community infrastructure programs include the Tennessee Small Cities Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), Transportation Enhancement Act (TE), Local Parks Recreation Fund (LPRF), Recreation Trails Program (RTP), Tennessee Recreation Initiative Program (TRIP), Special Technical Assistance Grant (STAG) Tennessee Department of Agriculture, and Energy Efficiency Community Block Grant (EECBG).

Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy

The Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy was developed to serve as both a planning document and benchmarking tool for economic development within the FTDD region, which includes Carter, Greene, Hancock, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington Counties. The CEDS document is available here for review

Administrative Services

Receiving funding is always good news to a community; however, administrative guidelines of grant programs must be followed to make the project a reality. These administrative services include completing an environmental review, assisting with the bidding process, organizing requests for payment applications, assisting with acquisition, complying with labor standards, and completing the project close out. During the past year, the District provided administrative services for 40 projects.

Economic Development Financing

The non-profit lending corporation of the First Tennessee Development District is the Northeast Tennessee Economic Development Corporation. The purpose of NETEDC is to promote economic development through loan programs to businesses. A Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) was established in 1990 with funds from the Economic Development Administration and State of Tennessee. A Business Development Loan Fund (BDLF) was established in 1994 with funds from Rural Development (RD) and the state. The NETEDC established the Johnson City Downtown Redevelopment Loan Program in 2006 with funding from eight banks. More recently, the NETEDC established the Greeneville Downtown Redevelopment Loan Program to achieve similar goals in Greeneville. 

The programs help businesses through fixed-asset and permanent-working-capital financing. Through the loan programs, 94 companies have received funding of $6.7 million dollars. Combined, these companies have created 690 jobs to date. 

Below is a list of the current Board of Directors and Loan Committee of the NETEDC which reviews and oversees loan projects and the implementation loan programs.

Board of Directors

Mr. Russell Brackins

Community Representative

Mr. Steve Mears

Tri-Summit Bank

Mr. Paul Monk

Clinchfield Federal Credit Union

Mr. Jerry O'Connor

Impact Plastics

Mr. Tom Olterman

City of Kingsport

Mr. Doug Price

Community Representative

Mrs. Susan F. Reid

First Tennessee Development District

Dr. Allen Spritzer, Ph.D

ETSU, College of Business & Technology

Mr. Rick Storey

Citizens Bank, Tri-Cities

Loan Committee

Mr. Bobby Brown

Mountain Commerce Bank

Mr. Stephen Dixon

Bank of Tennessee

Mr. Michael C. Hill

Citizens Bank, Tri-Cities

Dr. Robert Justice, PhD

ETSU, Small Business Development Center

Mr. Darren Murray

Home Trust Bank

Mr. Ken Rea

First Tennessee Development District

Mr. Robert Williams

Peoples Community Bank


Project Slideshow

Below are pictures that highlight projects funded by Economic & Community Development grants throughout the region. 

ECD.1_20080084.JPG ECD.2_20080083.JPG ECD.4_20080091.JPG ECD.5_20080090.JPG ECD.6_20080089.JPG ECD.7_20080088.JPG ECD.8_20080087.JPG ECD.9_20080086.JPG ECD.10_20080085.JPG ECD3_20080092.JPG



Contact Us

If you are interested in additional information about the District’s Economic & Community Development Programs, please contact Ken Rea at (423) 928-0224.