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State awards $500 million for READI 2.0, aiming to generate $11 billion in investment statewide

A screen that reads "READI 2.0 Awards" is in the foreground, while Eric Holcomb is in the background.
Brandon Smith
IPB News
Gov. Eric Holcomb chaired a meeting of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation board Thursday, April 11, 2024, at which the board approved $500 million in awards for the READI 2.0 program.

The second phase of Gov. Eric Holcomb’s READI program — a regional economic development initiative — is set to generate $11 billion in investment across the state.

The latest $500 million in state funding was awarded Thursday to 15 regions, covering the entire state.

The regions will receive between $10 million and $45 million for capital and infrastructure projects. Holcomb said in this round of funding, regions could have received up to $75 million — but the proposals were all competitive enough that the state wanted to spread the money around as much as possible.

“But I think we very methodically arrived at what was not just fair, but that was effective in spurring local economic growth that's going to get to population growth and attracting, addressing talent scarcity,” Holcomb said.

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Many of Holcomb’s would-be successors in the governor’s race have criticized his economic development approach. They’ve said it’s a top-down strategy that ignores local input.

Holcomb waved aside those criticisms as ignorant.

“They should get busy doing the work and they would see just how much local input drives today,” Holcomb said. “This is a true partnership.”

The money will be dispersed and spent over the next several years.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.