Bennet, Udall Herald $6.6 Million Investment to Diversify Colorado's Economy, Strengthen Defense Sector

U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and Mark Udall heralded the U.S. Department of Defense's decision today to award a more than $6.6 million competitive grant to diversify Colorado's economy and make the defense industry more resilient. The two-year competitive grant, issued through the Office of Economic Adjustment, will be used to promote public-private partnerships to sustain Colorado's economy in the event of federal budget cuts affecting contractors.

Bennet and Udall led a letter to the Pentagon in August championing Colorado's application for the competitive grant.

"Colorado's highly skilled workforce, world-class universities, and cutting edge research facilities have made the state an ideal location for the aerospace, engineering, manufacturing, and defense industries," Bennet said. "In light of the sequester and reductions in defense spending this funding will help create opportunities for businesses to continue to expand into other markets and keep jobs here in Colorado."

"Colorado's military installations, missions and personnel strengthen our economy and support our special way of life. We are winning the global economic race thanks to our innovative and job-creating defense industry," Udall said. "This competitive grant, which I championed, will ensure that Colorado's defense firms continue to create jobs even if federal budget cuts hit defense contractors. These funds will help make our economy more resilient and stronger over the long term."