DECC receiving $750,000 federal grant

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Events booked at the DECC will be important revenue to get the convention center humming again. A $750,000 federal grant will help too.

"This is a significant grant. And I can tell you, when the email came in, there was some hooting and hollering in the DECC administration area," DECC Communications Director Lucie Amundsen said.

In total, the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant will give the DECC $751,743. The money will be assigned three purposes: hiring, utilities, and maintenance.

"It will be roughly $250,000 to welcome back all the staff that’s needed here to turn on those lights and create the solid events that the DECC is known for," Amundsen said. "And an equal amount will go to paying for those lights."

Another equivalent amount will help fix up some of the many spaces around the DECC. Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D) sponsored the bill that created the grants.

Typically, the DECC employs about 460 people. At the lowest point during the pandemic, they were down to 12.

"We’re revving back up, and we are now cresting into the triple digits," Amundsen said.

She said the calendar is filling up, and they are excited to host lots of events in the late summer and fall.