LOCAL Fund: Worker Ownership Program

The application deadline has passed. The City of Saint is no longer accepting applications for the LOCAL Fund: Worker Ownership Program.

The City of Saint Paul is seeking a partnership with a qualified organization to serve as a program administrator for the Local Fund: Worker Ownership Program. The program will increase the number of worker-owned businesses in the City of Saint Paul by alleviating start-up and transition costs and mitigating financial hardship for eligible worker-owned businesses.

Qualified applicants will be nonprofit organizations with demonstrated experience and knowledge of cooperative business models. The program administrator will be charged with:  

  1. Outreach and Identification of Program Participants: The program administrator must conduct outreach and engagement to identify program participants that would be interested in startup or transition to a Worker Ownership Model. This work may also include pipeline development for businesses enrolled in the program.  
  2. Technical Assistance and Trainings: The program administrator will offer a variety of training opportunities:
    • Business Planning: Small businesses will have access to support for business plan development.  
    • Technical Assistance: Providing program participants with technical assistance to transfer or establish a cooperative business structure and other general small business needs.
  3. Administering and monitoring financial awards: Program participants can become eligible for financial awards, including:  
    • Business expansion or start up grants of up to $500,000
    • Emergency Financial Hardship Assistance up to $300,000  
    • Construction costs for some rehabilitation of commercial properties to prepare for a new business opportunity.  
  4. Project Coordination: Applicant organizations can request staffing to address the coordination of the program’s management requirements.

The City of Saint Paul expects to select one program administrator. The total available funding to apply for through this RFP is $1,250,000.

Find more information about the program details, selection process, and application instructions and materials in the Request for Proposal document.

Please note this Request for Proposal (RFP) is not an application for small businesses. The program administrator selected through this RFP will select small businesses to receive financial support and technical assistance through the Worker Ownership program.  

This project is being supported, in whole or in part, by federal award number SLFRP1612 awarded to City of Saint Paul by the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

Application Process

The application deadline is September 1, 2023. All applications must be received no later than 4:30 p.m. Central Time on the deadline.

Late applications will not be accepted. It is the applicant’s sole responsibility to allow sufficient time to address all potential delays. The City will not be responsible for delays caused by mail, delivery, computer or technology problems.  

Applications must be submitted via email to ofe@ci.stpaul.mn.us. Applications can be accessed via the link below, which will bring you directly to the application specific to this program.

Supporting Documents

Questions and Answers?

Should applicants have questions about the application process, please contact Linda Garrett-Johnson at ofe@ci.stpaul.mn.us or 651-266-9824. To ensure the proper and fair evaluation of all applications, answers by City personnel will be limited to the technical information about forms and eligibility requirements and will not include advice on the scope of an individual applicant project or the content of their proposal. All questions received from applicants will be posted below, along with responses provided by City personnel.

This Q&A section will be updated on a weekly basis.

Last Edited: October 3, 2023