The mission of the department is to provide pro-active leadership, enhancing the quality of life, and sustainability of Hawai‘i Island communities through programs related to: agriculture, energy, tourism, economic development, community development, and film.

Kīlauea Eruption Recovery Information

Please refer to the County’s Kīlauea Eruption Recovery website for current recovery information and links to online resources.

Current Highlights

  • New: State of Hawai‘i, Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT) is partnering with the Federal Reserve to conduct a Small Business Credit Survey for both start-up and existing businesses. This short survey will take approximately 9 minutes and will ask about business conditions, financing needs, and credit experiences. Summary results will be shared with you, and all responses are confidential.  Survey closes December 20, 2019. If you have any questions, please contact To take the survey, please click on this link
  • New: VISTA job opportunities. Help build the capacity and readiness of our community by serving as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the County of Hawai‘i. These are full-time, 1-year positions with great benefits! See position flyers for details.
  • New: The Secretary of Agriculture announced the beginning sign up date of September 11, 2019 for a newly authorized program designed to assist disaster effected producers throughout the United States and its Territories, the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+). This program is a direct result of the U.S. Congress' recently passed disaster relief bill which was designed to assist Hawai‘i & Pacific Basin producers who had severe crop loss resulting from the eight disaster in 2018.  Disasters covered under this program include Hawai‘i County Volcano Eruption (Lava and VOG) and Hurricane Lane.  Scheduled outreach meeting will cover WHIP+ program. For more information and Outreach Information Briefing schedule, see attached flyer. Additional details about WHIP+ is available at
  • New: The increase demand for corn and other grains for international trade and conversion into ethanol and bio-diesel in the United State has caused dramatic rise in the price of feed to livestock production. Feed cost can be reduced by replacing some of the high-priced grains with local agricultural by-products. For more information see Publication LM-34 and The Analysis of Agricultural By-Products to be used as Animal Feeds on Hawai‘i Island Poster
  • Closed: Innovation Grants for Fiscal Year 2019-2020. R&D is requesting proposals for innovation grant awards in preparation for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. The intent of the grant program is to support research, programs, or projects that advance innovation in economic development, tourism, agriculture, creative economy, energy, and sustainable development in Hawai‘i County. For more information and forms, go to Funding and Grant Resources.
  • Closed: Hawai‘i Island Visitor Promotions Grant for Fiscal Year 2019-2020. R&D is requesting proposals for the visitor promotions grant award in preparation for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. The intent of the grant program is to support marketing initiatives that grow Hawai‘i Island’s visitor arrivals and expenditures, and strengthen Hawai‘i Island’s brand to sustain the visitor industry in a way that protects the assets of the island, while providing economic benefit to the island’s businesses and residents. For more information and forms, go to Funding and Grant Resources.
  • Island of Hawai‘i Visitors Bureau and Hawai‘i County Announce Pono Pledge. The Island of Hawai‘i Visitors Bureau (IHVB) and County of Hawai‘i have partnered to launch the “Pono Pledge,” a new public information campaign aimed to at educating and encouraging residents and visitors to be safe, responsible and respectful to each other and the environment while enjoying the bounty of the island of Hawai‘i. See full pledge on the Tourism page. For more information, please see the attached news release.
  • County of Hawai‘i Data Portal created by The Economic Research Organization at the University of Hawai‘i (UHERO)
  • GrantStation Hawai‘i County organizations and residents are invited to apply for access to the Department of R&D’s GrantStation subscription. Submit an Application for Access.
  • DCCA Hilo Business Action Center Day Schedule
  • DCCA West Hawai‘i Business Action Center Day Schedule
  • 2016-2020 Hawai‘i County Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS)
  • Hawai‘i Island Tourism Road Map, 2016
  • 2015 Hawai‘i County Data Book
  • How to Start a Business in Hawai‘i County - a resource guide to successful business development
  • R&D Economic Development Grant for Fiscal Year 2017-18 Award List
  • R&D Innovation Grants Program for Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Award List
  • R&D Innovation Grants Program for Fiscal Year 2019-2020 Award List

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