Information on COVID-19 Small Business Assistance Programs
Updated: Apr 24
We are compiling an ongoing list of grant and loan programs that can help small, locally owned businesses weather the COVID-19 pandemic. If you know of additional programs, or if you have updates on the status of any of the programs included here, please email kennedy[at]ilsr.org.
Grant programs are in greatest demand and are almost always depleted within hours or days. Programs that offer no-interest loans, with deferred loan repayment, are also in great demand, serving as bridges until federal aid is available. Many of these grant and no-interest, deferred-repayment programs have already been exhausted, but we are including them in this list as potential models for new programs.
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As part of its COVID-19 response, Congress has created several small business relief programs:
Tax credits for required paid leave by small and midsize businesses: The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), signed into law on March 18, 2020, provides small and midsize employers refundable tax credits that reimburse them, dollar-for-dollar, for the cost of providing paid sick and family leave wages to their employees for leave related to COVID-19. Workers may receive up to 80 hours of paid sick leave for their own health needs or to care for others and up to ten additional weeks of paid family leave to care for a child whose school or place of care is closed or child care provider is unavailable due to COVID-19 precautions. Certain self-employed individuals in similar circumstances are entitled to similar credits.
Paycheck Protection Program: Part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, signed into law on March 27, the Paycheck Protection Program provides $350 billion in government-backed loans to help small businesses pay their workers and cover fixed expenses.. Businesses can apply to borrow up to 2.5 times their average monthly payroll costs, up to $10 million. Loans made to businesses that maintain their payroll levels for at least eight weeks, through June 30 and that spend at least 75 percent of their loan on payroll will be fully forgiven. In addition to using loan proceeds for payroll expenses, business owners can use loans for rent, utilities, mortgage payments, and other essential business expenses. Businesses can apply for the program through qualified SBA lenders. The application process opened on April 3rd for small businesses and sole proprietors and on April 10 for independent contractors and self-employed workers. The Program’s small business was exhausted within two weeks. As of April 20, Congressional leaders and the White House are approaching an agreement to replenish the Program with another roughly $300 billion.
Employee Retention Credit: The CARES Act created a refundable tax credit for employers whose businesses were suspended due to a shutdown order or whose gross receipts dropped by more than 50 percent over the same time period last year. The credit is worth 50 percent of payrolls paid between March 13-December 31, 2020, up to a maximum of $10,000.
SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program: The CARES Act also expanded lending capacity for the SBA’s existing Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program. Through this program, business owners can borrow up to $2 million and request a $10,000 advance on the loan (which does not need to be repaid). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for businesses and 2.75 percent for nonprofit organizations.
In addition to these COVID-19 specific new programs and appropriations, there are several existing SBA programs that might be useful to small businesses affected by the pandemic. In particular, the 7(a) Program provides loans up to $5 million for working capital, physical facilities; equipment; inventory; seasonal lines of credit; and other basic business expenses; the Express Loan Program provides loans up to $350,000, with a 36-hour turnaround time; and the Microloan Program, which makes loans up to $50,000. through nonprofit lending intermediaries to underserved markets.
The National Endowment for the Arts received $75 million through the CARES Act to re-grant to state and regional arts agencies and to nonprofit arts agencies to help them and their employees weather the economic hardships caused by forced closure due to COVID-19. Applicants must be previous recipients of a National Endowment for the Arts grant within the last four years. Direct fund grants will be awarded in a fixed amount of $50,000; subgranting grants are available in fixed amounts of $100,000 or $250,000, of which up to $50,000 can be used for the subgranting entity’s own operations. Applications were due April 22.
The US Department of Agriculture has launched the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) to help farmers and ranchers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of $16 billion will be available in direct payments to agricultural producers and $3 billion in food purchases. In its first tranche, direct payments will compensate producers for 85 percent of price losses that occurred between January 1 – April 15, 2020. Its second tranche will cover 30 percent of anticipated losses through the next two quarters. For the food purchase program component, USDA will partner with regional and local food distributors whose sales have been impacted by restaurant and other food service business closures, with distributors providing pre-approved boxes of fresh food to food banks, community and faith-based organizations, and other nonprofits helping needy Americans.
STATE AND LOCAL
The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama and the Community Foundation of West Alabama have created a Small Business Relief Fund offering grants to businesses with between 2-50 employees, be in good standing with local and state government, and be located in one of the nine counties in West Alabama. As of March 31, the Fund had awarded more than $60,000 to 18 businesses.
The City of Auburn has approved a resolution allowing the City to use municipal funds to cover interest payments on loans of up to $25,000 from participating banks to small businesses within Auburn. The City has committed $500,000 for the interest payments – half from the general fund and half from the economic development budget.
The Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA) has created a COVID-19 loan guarantee program, Sustaining Alaska’s Future Economy (AK SAFE). AIDEA will make up to $50 million available initially for loan guarantees, increasing to $100 million. The program will provide loan guarantees of up to $1 million per borrower. The program has no restrictions on the size of businesses eligible for loan guarantees.
Juneau’s Economic Development Council is offering emergency small business loans to affected businesses with 25 or fewer employees that are physically located in Juneau and current with property and sales tax payments. Loans are available up to $25,000 for businesses with ten or fewer employees and up to $50,000 for those with eleven or more employees. The maximum loan term is 30 months, with an interest rate not to exceed two percent. Interest paid on loans paid back within 12 months will be refunded.
Growth Partners Arizona (GPAz), a certified Community Development Financial Institution, offers two loan programs for small businesses affected by COVID-19. In partnership with Kiva, GPAz and the Community Investment Corporation (CIC) are offering globally crowdfunded no-interest, no-fee loans of $1,000-$15,000. In partnership with the Business Development Finance Corporation (BDFC), GBAz is offering Small Business Success Loans, with loans ranging from $1,000-$75,000, to qualified small businesses.
Invest Southwest, a nonprofit organization that connects investors with entrepreneurs, has created the Arizona Local Impact Fund to help businesses affected by COVID-19. Businesses must be headquartered in Arizona, be selling or servicing Arizona customers, and have been in business for 1-3 years.
Local First Arizona has started a $650,000 small business relief fund. To be eligible, a business must have annual revenues of less than $250,000 and be the sole income source for a family. Priority is given to businesses owned by a family with children under 18 in the household. As of April 10, the fund had received over 2,300 applications and distributed $175,000.
Arkansas’s Quick Action Closing Fund offers a loan guarantee (80 percent of the principal balance of a loan by a participating lender, with a cap of $250,000 per loan) and a zero-interest loan program. The $7 million fund is capitalized by $4 million from the Governor’s Quick Action Closing Fund, plus $3 million from Attorney General Leslie Rutledge’s Consumer Education and Enforcement Fund. The Attorney General’s funds prioritize helping small businesses with job retention.
California launched a $50 million loan guarantee program for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The program will be operated by the California Infrastructure Economic Development Bank and is intended for small businesses that might not be eligible for federal relief programs. Small businesses apply for loans from a participating lender, and the state provides a guarantee of up to 95 percent of the loan for up to seven years.
On March 17, the Berkeley City Council created the Berkeley Relief Fund, authorizing up to $3 million of city funding for emergency relief grants for small businesses, nonprofit arts organizations, and worker rent support. The City has asked members of the community to contribute to a fund to match this amount (as of April 22, the community has contributed almost $1 million). Business continuity grants of up to $10,000 are available to Berkeley-based businesses and nonprofits with 50 or fewer employees.
The Los Angeles Small Business Emergency Microloan Program is offering loans of between $5,000-$20,000 to for-profit and tax-exempt businesses with 100 or fewer employees. Interest rates range between 0-3 percent, according to loan terms. For loans of up to 18 months, the interest rate is zero, and repayment is deferred for up to six months.
Small businesses in San Francisco with fewer than five employees, less than $2.5 million in gross receipts, and that can demonstrate a loss of revenue of 25 percent or more are eligible to receive up to $10,000 for staff salaries and rent through the City’s COVID-10 Small Business Resiliency Fund.
The City of Mountain View created a $750,000 relief fund on March 30, 2020, to be capitalized with $400,000 in city funds and $350,000 in private pledges, to provide grants or loans of up to $10,000 per small business. Small businesses with 50 or fewer employees are eligible, as are landlords who own nine or fewer units.
The City of Fresno, in partnership with the Fresno Economic Opportunity Commission and Access Plus Capital, has created the Save Our Small Business Act, a $750,000 fund providing interest-free loans of up to $5,000 (for businesses with five or fewer employees) or $10,000 (for those with 6-25 employees). If businesses are still afloat a year from the loan date, the loans will be forgiven.
The Getty Trust has created a $10 million COVID-19 relief fund to provide emergency operating and recovery support to nonprofit arts organizations and museums in Los Angeles County. The relief fund is being administered by the California Community Foundation.
The City of Roseville has selected 111 local businesses to receive zero-interest secured loans of up to $20,000 from its $1 million Roseville Small Business Stabilization Program. Loan repayment is deferred until January 1, 2021. One-quarter of the $1 million pool was reserved for businesses with five or fewer employees. The program’s application period closed on March 31.
The City of San Diego established a Small Business Relief Fund to provide grants and loans of $10,000-$20,000 to small businesses in the cities of San Diego and Chula Vista. Businesses with more than 100 employees, chain stores, nonprofit organizations, home-based businesses, and certain types of businesses are not eligible. The program was initially capitalized with $6.1 million from California Coast Credit Union, Qualcomm, and San Diego Grantmakers and administered by the City’s Economic Development Department. The Fund received more than 9,000 applications by April 14, exhausting its pool. It is continuing to solicit contributions in order to continue offering grants and loans.
The City of Santa Clara opened a $500,000 grant program for small businesses on April 17 affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The program offers $5,000 grants for essential businesses and $10,000 for non-essential businesses, with grants awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Businesses must have no more than 25 full-time employees, operate out of a physical storefront within the city, be in good standing, and in operation for at least one year as of March 1. Chains are not eligible. The program received more than 250 applications on its first day of operation.
Jay King, the CEO and President of the California Black Chamber of Commerce, launched the Everybody Pitch In GoFundMe campaign on April 14, with the goal of raising $10 million in private-sector contributions to provide financial support to California-based small, Black-owned businesses.
Denver, through its Arts and Venues agency, recently launched its own version — the IMAGINE 2020 Artist Assistance Fund — with an initial $130,000 in grants for individual artists. As with Boston, the program will prioritize lower-income artists and those artists whose sole source of income comes from creative activity.
The Town of Breckenridge has expanded its Small Business Rent Relief Program, which it launched in late May. The program provides grants of up to $4,000 to small businesses to cover their rent, as we as grants of $2.58 per square feet, up to $4,000, to business owners who own their buildings. The Town allocated $1 million for the program and has so far awarded $453,229 to 153 businesses.
The City of Denver is creating a $44 million Small Business Emergency Relief program, offering grants of up to $7,500. The program prioritizes industries most impacted by the pandemic, such as restaurants, nail salons, barbershops, home childcare providers, and retail shops. The program is intended to be available for four months. The City has also created a microloan program, providing loans of $5,000-$50,000 to small businesses in targeted industries in vulnerable neighborhoods.
The El Paso County Economic Development Office has created a business relief fund for small businesses in the Pikes Peak Enterprise Zone. Small businesses located within the enterprise zone are eligible for grants up to $7,500. People who donate $100 or more to the fund will qualify for a state income tax credit of 25 percent of their donation.
The State of Connecticut is offering no-interest loans of up to $75,000 for affected small businesses, hoping to provide around 600 businesses with a quick cash infusion averaging around $40,000 each in its first round. The first round of funding was $20-25 million, enough to finance about 600 businesses with a quick cash infusion in the range of $40,000. This round closed on March 27, and the state is now encouraging small businesses to apply for federal support.
Connecticut is also offering one-to-one matching grants of up to $75,000 to Connecticut-based manufacturers interested in and able to produce critical supplies and equipment for combatting the COVID-19 virus. Grants can be used to buy equipment, developing prototypes, obtaining patents, and other related expenses.
The City of Hartford, in partnership with the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, HEDCO Inc., and Capital for Change have launched a $1 million Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program, making grants of up to $10,000 for Hartford businesses with annual revenues below $500,000. The Program will begin accepting applications on May 4.
Delaware’s Division of Small Business has created a Hospitality Emergency Loan Program (HELP), making no-interest loans of up to $10,00 per business per month to help businesses in the hospitality industry. To be eligible, businesses must have less than $1.5 million in annual revenues; have been in operation, with revenue, for at least 12 months; and operate in one of 15 four-digit NAICS industry codes.
District of Columbia
The City of Washington, DC created a Small Business Recovery Microgrants program, offering grants of up to $25,000 to small businesses, nonprofits, and self-employed business owners. The application period closed on April 1.
The State of Florida has created a Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program, offering loans of up to $50,000 to affected small businesses to cover the gap until businesses are able to get federal assistance or assistance from other programs. The interest rate is zero percent in the first year, but then zooms up to 12 percent after that. Businesses must have between 2-50 employees and cannot have any other current bridge loans. On April 13, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity announced that the program had made more than 1,000 loans, totaling more than $49 million. The program received more than 38,000 applications.
The City of Jacksonville has partnered with Vystar Credit Union to offer loans of up to $100,000 for businesses with between 2-100 employees and that have been in business for at least one year. The program provides a $1,000 grant plus a line of credit that can be tapped for six months.The City will cover interest payments for the first year.
Sarasota County is using an untapped economic development fund to make $4.3 million available in resiliency loans to tide over small businesses until federal relief is available. Small businesses may apply for loans of up to $25,000. Loan repayment will be deferred for the first year, then the interest rate is 3.5 percent for the next three years.
The City of St. Petersburg announced the launch of the Fighting Chance Fund on Friday, April 3rd. The program offers $5,000 grants to eligible small businesses, plus $500 to impacted workers. Businesses must have 25 or fewer employees and be locally owned and independently operated. As of April 16, the program had received about 1,800 applications and awarded roughly $77,000. On April 14, Mayor Rick Kriseman announced that the city was expanding eligibility requirements; it will now accept applications from travel agencies, businesses open for six months (rather than one year), and businesses whose owners do not live within city limits.
The Tarpon Springs City Commission has created a $100,000 Small Business Endurance Grants program, providing one-time $1,000 grants to small businesses. Businesses must be public-facing, have 50 or fewer employees, be current on taxes, and able to demonstrate a revenue loss due to the pandemic. The program is funded by the City’s emergency reserve fund. Applications will be accepted between April 9-23.
Select Fulton and the Development Authority of Fulton County have created the $1.5 million DAFC Business Contingency Loan Program, offering loans of up to $50,000 to small businesses in Fulton County negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Fulton County Board of Commissioners launched a nearly identical loan program, also with the Development Authority, the week of April 13, but its funding was exhausted within 72 hours. Loan applications may be submitted through the Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs’ website.
The City of Rome will use a new $258,000 Community Development Block Grant to make grants of up to $5,000 to small businesses with no more than 20 employees. The program, which is still under development, will score applications using a point system, with additional weight given to the smallest businesses. The City anticipates launching the program in early- to mid-May.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
The City of Chicago has launched a Small Business Resiliency Fund, offering low-interest loans of up to $50,000 to affected small businesses. To qualify, businesses must have fewer than 50 employees and less than $3 million in annual revenue, and it must have lost at least 25 percent in revenue during the pandemic. The $100 million relief fund is a partnership between the City (which contributed $25 million), the Chicago Community Catalyst Fund ($50 million), Goldman Sachs’ Urban Investment Group ($10 million), Fifth Third ($1 million), and the remainder from other private contributors. Loans will be made through a network of Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs)
The State of Illinois has established a Small Business COVID-10 Relief Program, an impact investment loan program. The State’s Treasurer has made roughly $250 million in deposits available to financial institutions throughout the state to re-lend to affected businesses, either as low-rate loans or as loans to businesses or nonprofit organizations that would otherwise not qualify for a loan.
The City of Sterling is offering one-percent loans of up to $10,000 to locally owned businesses with fewer than 25 employees. Business owners will make interest-only payments in the first year of the payback period. The $300,000 loan program is capitalized with funds that were originally part of a municipal economic development fund.
The Arts for Illinois Relief Fund is providing one-time grants of $1,500, on a lottery basis, to workers and organizations in creative industries that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Fund is a partnership between the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois, private-sector philanthropists, and private citizens.
In late March, the University of Chicago created a $1 million small business relief program, offering rent relief and operating grants of $2,500-$7,500 to small, locally owned businesses who rent space from the University’s Commercial Real Estate Operations (CREO). The University received more than 600 applications. It announced its first awards, to 18 tenants, on April 13 and will make additional awards in a later distribution.
Cook County launched a $10 million Community Recovery Fund on April 7, offering no-interest loans to suburban small businesses, gig workers, and independent contractors. Loans of up to $20,000 are available to small businesses and of up to $10,000 for independent workers. Small businesses must have less than $3 million in annual revenue and fewer than 25 workers; independent workers (like hair stylists, service repair workers, and freelance writers) must have less than $100,000 in gross annual income and earn at least half of their income from contract work. The fund was capitalized with county funds and Community Development Block Grants.
The For The People Collective created a grant program – Artists of Color Emergency Grants – to support artists and freelancers of color in Illinois. In its first round it distributed a total of $10,369 to 49 artists and freelancers. The program has temporarily closed due to overwhelming demand but is hoping to reopen in the near future.
State Farm is providing a $10 million loan to the Local Initiatives Support Corporation to re-loan to small businesses and nonprofits in central Illinois. The loans are targeted to women-, minority-, and veteran-owned small businesses; nonprofit social enterprises with revenues under $5 million, and small Community Development Financial Institutions that support small businesses.
The City of Indianapolis is partnering with the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce to make $3 million in loans of $1,000-$25,000 available to the city’s small businesses, primarily to help cover payroll and insurance premiums. The program also offers free one-on-one business coaching.
Bankable, a nonprofit lender in Anderson, has created two loan programs for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The QuickBridge Loan program offers loans of up to $50,000 for businesses that are still in operation but are having cash flow problems. The Reboot Loan, which has not yet been launched, offers loans of up to $20,000 for businesses that have had to temporarily close.
The City of Lawrenceburg, in partnership with the Lawrenceburg Main Street program, has created a Public Health Emergency Small Business Grant (PHESBG) program, offering $3,500 grants to brick-and-mortar small, locally owned businesses with under 25 employees and that have been closed or partially closed during normal business hours because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Arts Council of Indianapolis has launched the Indy Arts & Culture COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund to help independent artists and staff working for small- and midsize nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. The Fund provides rapid-response $500 grants. Applicants must live in Marion County or one of the surrounding counties.
The City of South Bend announced on April 16 that it is giving $600,000 to two Community Development Financial Institutions – Bankable and Accion – to provide small business loans to local businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
IMPACT Central Indiana, a limited liability company created by the Central Indiana Community Foundation, has launched a fund to make emergency loans, equity investments, and grants to businesses owned by people of color and by members of marginalized communities in Hamilton and Marion Counties. Half of the $500,000 was contributed by IMPACT Central Indiana, and half was contributed by First Internet Bank.
The Iowa Small Business Relief Fund offers grants ranging from $5,000-$25,000, in addition to offering a deferral of sales and use or withholding taxes due and waiver of penalty and interest to eligible businesses. Funds can be used to assist businesses in maintaining operations or reopening business following the COVID-19; they cannot be used to pay debts incurred prior to March 17, 2020.
The Iowa Targeted Small Business Sole Operator Fund supports businesses with zero employees that have been economically impacted by COVID-10. The program offers eligible small businesses grants up to $10,000 to businesses that are single owners with no employees that are also TSB certified, or have an application submitted to the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) by April 10, 2020 to become TSB certified.
The Kansas Department of Commerce created a $5 million Hospitality Industry Relief Emergency (HIRE) Fund on March 20, 2020 to provide bridge loans to hospitality industry businesses in Kansas. The fund was depleted within hours of accepting its first applications. Zero-interest, 36-month loans of up to $20,000 were available, with loan payments deferred for four months. Decisions on loan applications were made within 72 hours, and funds were transferred to businesses within 48 hours of approval. The Fund continues to accept applications in the event more capital becomes available.
Four organizations in the Emporia, Kansas area have pooled resources to create the Greater Emporia area Disaster Relief fund to support businesses and nonprofit organizations. The fund was seeded with contributions from the four sponsoring organizations (the Emporia Community Foundation, Emporia Main Street, KVOE, and the United Way of the Flint Hills) and is soliciting contributions from the public. Businesses can apply for grants through the Emporia Main Street program, with nonprofits applying through the United Way of the Flint Hills.
Fort Thomas is offering $2,500 zero-interest, one-year loans to locally owned businesses. The Fort Thomas Business Assistance Program was launched on March 30 and will be available through April 30.
The Downtown Henderson Partnership has established a virtual tip jar for downtown service industry workers affected by the covid-10 pandemic.
The City of Newport is offering rent and mortgage payment reimbursements of up to $500 per month, for up to four months, to small businesses. The program is open to businesses with between 3-100 employees and with a valid City of Newport occupational license.
The Louisville Home Opportunities and Micro-Enterprise Community Development Loan Fund, Inc. (LHOME), a Community Development Financial Institution, has partnered with Render Capital, Louisville, Forward, Lenderfit, and GLI to create a Small Business Continuity Loan program. The program offers zero-percent loans of up to $25,000, with no repayment for 12 months, for Jefferson County businesses with ten or fewer employees and that are current on their tax payments. The loan program is intended to offer bridge financing, with borrowers applying for other assistance to pay off the loan within one year. Should a small business borrower not find other assistance, the loan will be renewed for four years, at five percent interest. The program will begin accepting applications on April 6.
Louisiana Economic Development (LED), in partnership with the Louisiana Loan Portfolio Guaranty Program, has launched a $50 million loan guaranty program to provide loans to small businesses within the state that have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Loans will be made by members of the Louisiana Bankers Association, with LED guaranteeing 20 percent of the loans. Businesses with fewer than 100 employees are eligible to borrow up to $100,000, with payments deferred for six months. Nonprofits, real estate developers, pawn shops, payday lenders, businesses that are solely engaged in gaming, and businesses engaged in speculative activities are ineligible.
The New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA) has established a grant fund for gig economy workers. NOLABA contributed $100,000 to launch the fund and hopes to grow it to $500,000. The fund will provide grants of $500-$1,000 to workers who live within Orleans Parish, earn 60 percent or more of their income from gig work, have lost income because of the pandemic, and are at or below 100 percent of the area’s median income.
The Greater New Orleans Foundation, with support from one of the owners of the McIlhenny Company (which makes Tabasco sauce), has created a family assistance program for service and hospitality workers. The program offers $1,000 grants to service and hospitality workers within the Foundation’s 13-parish service area. To qualify, a worker must have worked more than 32 hours per week in a restaurant, bar, or hotel before March 9, 2020; must have children or other qualified dependents in the household; and must have a household income at or below 80 percent of the area’s median income. Grants are awarded by lottery to 1,000 workers.
The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and Foundation has created a Jazz and Heritage Foundation Relief Fund to support Louisiana musicians who have lost income because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Foundation launched the Fund with $250,000 and is seeking additional contributions.
The Finance Authority of Maine (FAME)’s $5 million COVID-19 Relief Business Direct Loan Program provides FAME Direct Loans of up to $50,000 for Maine-based businesses experiencing interruption or hardship due to COVID-19 and that have exhausted all other sources of capital. Loan terms are one year, with an option for extension, at Wall Street Journal Prime minus one percent, fixed. The loans must be collateralized with business assets, and the business principals must provide unlimited personal guarantees.
On April 15, the City of Bath created a new emergency loan program for small businesses. The Economic Relief Bridge Program provides interest-free loans of up to $7,500 to businesses affected by COVID-19. The program is funded with $300,000 in Bath Iron Works tax increment financing, revenues earmarked for economic development.
The Brunswick Development Corporation has launched the Pandemic Emergency Loan Fund, offering zero-interest, two-year loans of up to $5,000, with principal payments deferred for 12 months, for small businesses in Brunswick.
The State of Maryland’s Emergency Relief Grant Fund provides grants up to $10,000, not to exceed three months of cash operating expenses for businesses and nonprofits with 50 or fewer employees. The grant program is intended to be a stop-gap, with businesses or nonprofit seeking longer-term funding through the SBA, a bank, or other source.
Maryland’s Emergency Relief Loan Fund provides businesses with 50 or fewer employees access to three-year loans up to $50,000, not to exceed three months of cash operating expenses. There is no interest for the first 12 months, then two percent for the remaining 24 months. Also, loan payments are deferred for the first 12 months, then amortized over the remainder of the loan term. There are no collateral requirements, but business owners must have a minimum personal credit score of 575.
The Frederick Arts Council’s Frederick Artist Relief Fund offers grants of $250-$500 to individual artists who live in Frederick County and whose work has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Fund is raising money through a GoFundMe campaign.
Montgomery County, Maryland is offering COVID-19 pandemic relief grants of up to $75,000 for businesses with up to 100 employees. One-quarter of the Public Health Emergency Grant Program is reserved for restaurants and retail businesses. Businesses can also apply for up to $2,500 for teleworking equipment. The $20 million program (plus an additional $10 million for local hospitals) was capitalized with funding from the County’s undesignated reserves.
Prince George’s County will offer up to $15 million in grants and loans to businesses impacted by the pandemic. Businesses can apply for loans of up to $100,000 and grants of up to $5,000 (for businesses with less than 10 employees) or $10,000 (for businesses with 10 or more). $10 million of the fund will come from the Economic Development Incentive Fund, a loan program managed by the PG C county Economic Development Corporation. The remaining $5 million will come from a mix of state and private funding sources.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts created a $10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund on March 16th, administered by the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation. The Fund provided loans of up to $75,000 to businesses (including nonprofits) with under 50 employees, with payments deferred for six months. But, once the SBA began offering Economic Injury Disaster Loans to businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Commonwealth closed the program.
The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and Citizens Bank have launched the LISC Small Business Recovery Grant Program, offering grants of up to $10,000 to small businesses in Massachusetts. Applications will be accepted between April 20-24. Priority will be given to minority- and women-owned businesses and other vulnerable businesses.
The City of Boston has created a $2 million Small Business Relief Fund, making grants of between $2,500-$10,000 to businesses impacted by COVID-19, with priority given to those most directly affected by closures or other policies directly related to the pandemic. To be eligible, businesses must have fewer than 35 employees and annual gross revenue below $1.5 million. In addition, it has created a $3 million fund to help tenants make their rent payments. The program will begin accepting applications on April 6, 2020.
The City of Boston’s Arts and Culture Department has created the Boston Artist Relief Fund, offering grants of $500 to individual artists living in Boston and whose income has been adversely impacted by COVID-19. The Fund opened on March 12 and will close on April 30.
The Boston Main Streets Foundation launched an Emergency Response Fund on April 1, offering $1,000 grants to small businesses in one of the city’s 20 Main Streets districts. To qualify, businesses must have ten or fewer employees, must offer face-to-face contact (such as salons, barber shops, and storefront retailers), and must have been classified as “non-essential” by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The Emergency Response Fund has been overwhelmed with applications and is now crowdfunding to raise additional capital.
The City of Cambridge has created a Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant, offering grants of up to $6,000 for retail, food, personal services, and creative for-profit businesses with brick-and-mortar locations. Grants may be used for paying rent, mortgages, and other operating expenses; employee wages; perishable inventory lost because of business interruption; and resources to get the business established online.
The City of Chicopee has reallocated $150,000 from its Community Development Block Grant funds to create an emergency Business Operating Grants Program, with grants of up to $10,000 to businesses affected by the pandemic. To be eligible, businesses must be Chicopee-based, in operation for at least 24 months, and current on state and local taxes. Because the Program uses CDBG funds, grants must be compliant with federal Block Grant regulations, including continued employment of low- and moderate-income workers.
The Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation is offering Quick Capital Loans of up to $20,000, at six percent interest, to Boston businesses. Loans are approved rapidly, with no application fee. It is also offering a Neighborhood Loan Fund for businesses in the Dorchester, Roxbury, Mattapan, Hyde Park, Roslindale, and Jamaica Plain neighborhoods. This Fund offers loans of up to $250,000 at seven percent interest, for up to five years.
The Greater Holyoke Chamber of Commerce is collaborating with the City of Holyoke’s Community Development Office to offer a $90,000 Business Emergency Operation Grant Program, capitalized with Community Development Block Grant funds. Businesses must have been in existence as of January 20, 2020 and must demonstrate that it will benefit low/moderate income workers and meet other CDBG requirements.
Through the CARES Act, the City of Westfield received a supplemental appropriation of $216,737 to its Community Development Block Grant Program and is using a portion of this to make grants to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Wayne County, in partnership with TCF Bank, is offering a low-interest, fast turnaround loan program Businesses must be located in low-income Census tracts, have fewer than 100 employees, under $1 million in annual revenue, and suffered a 25 percent revenue loss during the pandemic. Loans are for $5,000-$50,000, 12-month term, interest-only payments for the first six months, followed by regular payments and a final balloon payment. 0-2% interest rate. Initial pool will be $6 million.
An African American hair stylist in Detroit has launched the Beauty Professionals of Color Relief Fund to help minority-owned haircare businesses in the city of Detroit. The Fund is raising money by asking people to donate what they would normally pay for a cut, color, trim, or treatment, plus tip.
Detroit’s TechTown, a small business and technology hub and business incubator, has partnered with the City, the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, and Invest Detroit to make working capital grants of up to $5,000 to bridge the gap until federal relief is available. To qualify for the Detroit Small Business Stabilization Fund, the business owner’s personal income must be low- or moderate; the business must have ten employees or less; the business must have a physical establishment; it must have experienced a loss of income due to COVID-19. Low-income business owners in neighborhoods at high risk of displacement are prioritized.
The Michigan Music Alliance has created a Michigan Artist Relief Fund, offering grants of up to $500 for full-time musicians living in Michigan whose work has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, with priority given to those who have experienced a severe financial impact and with immediate need.
The Michigan Small Business Relief Program will offer grants of up to $10,000 and loans of $50,000-$200,000, at a 0.25 percent interest rate. Businesses with 50 or fewer employees are eligible for grants; those with 100 or fewer are eligible for loans, assuming they are unable to obtain financing elsewhere.
Pure Michigan Business Connect (PMBC) is offering grants of $10,000 to $150,000 to Michigan small manufacturing businesses interested in producing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Businesses can use the grants to buy equipment needed to make critical supplies and for other expenses related to operationalizing new production lines.
The City of Lansing announced the launch of the first phase of a $400,000 Small Business Recovery Program on April 9. The program offers grants of up to $10,000 to businesses with a brick-and-mortar location in the city, 25 or fewer employees, annual revenues of less than $1.5 million in 2019, and demonstrated income loss related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications are due by April 16, and grants will be announced the week of April 27. The program is funded by the Lansing Economic Development Corporation.
The State of Minnesota is offering Interest-free Small Business Emergency Loans of $2,500-$35,000. Loans will be paid back monthly over five years, with repayment deferred for six months. Most small businesses are eligible, except those involved in gambling or adult-oriented activities or that derive income from passive investments without operational ties to an operating business.
The Little Falls Economic Development Authority is offering loans of up to $5,000 for 24 months, with deferred payments for the first six months and zero-percent interest for the final 18 months.
The City of Saint Paul is offering flat $7,500 grants to businesses with gross revenues of $2 million or less and that have been in operation in St. Paul for at least three months. The $3.85 million Saint Paul Bridge Fund (which also includes $1,000 grants to families with children) is supported by the Saint Paul Housing and Redevelopment Authority and a number of private donors, including the Bush Foundation, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Minnesota Wild, and Xcel Energy. Applications are open until April 19.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
The St. Louis Economic Development Partnership and the St. Louis Development Corporation have created a zero-interest loan program for small businesses in St. Louis and St. Louis County. The program offers loans of up to $5,000. Businesses must have been active for at least one year and be current on all taxes through 2018.
The St. Louis Community Foundation has launched the Gateway Resilience Fund to make emergency grants to owners and employees of restaurants, bars, entertainment venues, retail businesses, and other small establishments in the St. Louis region. Grants are $1,000, if sent directly to vendors for payment, or $500, if mailed to the grant recipient. In addition, the St. Louis Community Improvement District (CID) is offering $5,000 grants through the Foundation for small businesses within its 180-block area. To be eligible for the CID grants, businesses must have at least five employees and have been in business for at least two years.
On March 31, a coalition of Kansas City-based organizations announced that they were creating a $5 million KC Covid-19 Small Business Relief Fund, to be administered by AltCap, a Community Development Financial Institution. The Fund received an extremely high volume of requests and was tapped out by April 3. The program was open to businesses located in the Kansas City region with 20 or fewer full-time-equivalent employees and $2.5 million or less in annual revenue. It gave priority to businesses in the retail, food service, arts/entertainment, hospitality, healthcare (if not directly involved in COVID-19 response), fitness, personal service, and transportation industries. Loans of up to $100,000 were available, with no interest and with deferred payments for the first 6-12 months. The coalition consists of AltCap, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas City Area Development Council, the Civic Council of Greater Kansas City, and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
We are not yet aware of any state small business assistance programs.
The City of Manchester is putting together a $1 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund. If approved by the City’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen on April 7, the fund will be capitalized by $500,000 from the Manchester Development Corporation and $500,000 from the City. The fund will offer loans of up to $25,000 at two percent interest, with loans used to costs associated with resuming business operations.
We are not yet aware of any state small business assistance programs, although several state agencies are exploring options.
The City of Newark has redirected its recently launched $750,000 Creative Catalyst Fund to ensure that the arts continue to thrive in the city. The Fund now offers two grant streams – one providing general operating support to Newark-based nonprofit arts and cultural organizations (with grants ranging between $2,500-$50,000) and one providing artist fellowships to support individual artists or unincorporated artist collectives (with grants ranging between $1,000-$10,000). The application deadline is May 1.
The Westfield United Fund has launched a We Love Local campaign, matching public contributions to the campaign with money from the Fund to make emergency grants to locally owned small businesses affected by the pandemic.
The New Mexico Economic Development Department (NMEDD) has created a Business Loan Guarantee Program to facilitate emergency loans or lines of credit to small businesses by guaranteeing a portion of a loan or line of credit up to 80 percent of the loan’s principal or $50,000. Business owners seek loans or lines of credit from traditional lending institutions and, if a loan is approved, NMEDD guarantees the loan in the event the business owner defaults on repayment.
The Albuquerque Community Foundation and the United Way of Central New Mexico are offering grants of $500-$5,000 to nonprofit organizations struggling with lost revenue and non-recoverable expenses due to COVID-19.
The Los Alamos Community Foundation is offering grants of $500-$1,500 to nonprofit organizations impacted by the COVID-19 crisis through its Nonprofit Emergency Response Fund. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The Fund was launched in collaboration with Delle Foundation, LANL Foundation, Newport News Nuclear BWXT Los Alamos (N3B), Triad National Security LLC, and United Way of Northern New Mexico. It also accepts public contributions.
The New York City Employee Retention Grant Program offers grants to businesses with fewer than five employees to cover 40 percent of payroll costs for two months. To be eligible, businesses must be located in one of the City’s five boroughs, have no more than five employees, have been in operation for at least six months, and have no outstanding tax liens or legal judgments. The maximum grant available is $27,000.
The New York City Small Business Continuity Loan Fund offers zero-interest loans of up to $75,000 to businesses impacted by COVID-19. Businesses must be located in one of the City’s five boroughs, must have fewer than 100 employees, have no outstanding tax liens or legal judgments, and have experienced a decrease in revenue of at least 25 percent because of the pandemic.
Dance/NYC has created a COVID-19 Dance Relief Fund, offering monthly grants of $500, with a maximum of $1500, to freelance dance workers (dancer, choreographers, dance photographers/videographers, dance instructors, technicians, agents, and others) in New York City. The Fund received 653 applications for the month of April and awarded 180 grants.
Kerby Jean-Raymond, founder of the menswear line Pyer Moss, for example, announced that the company is offering $50,000 for minority- and female-owned creative businesses that are struggling to keep afloat in NYC. He has also made his Pyer Moss studio into a donation center for N95 masks and latex gloves.
The Renaissance Economic Development Corporation, a Queens-based Community Development Financial Institution, is offering loans of up to $50,000 to businesses with 50 employees or less within the CDFI’s service area. Repayment is deferred for six months, at which point the interest rate is three percent. The CDFI is raising money from individuals and corporations to capitalize the loan fund.
North Carolina is offering NC COVID-19 Rapid Recovery loans through a partnership of public, private, and nonprofit entities. Loans are intended to serve as bridge financing to support small businesses until another financing source or future business cash flow is available. Loans are capped at two months of current revenue, with a maximum of $50,000. Loan repayment is deferred for six months, after which the business repays the loan over the course of 48 months, at 5.5 percent interest. There are no prepayment penalties. Any person who owns more than 20 percent of the business for which the loan application is made must personally guarantee the loan.
Morehead City has created an Emergency Small Business Loan Program, making emergency, short-term loans of up to $5,000 to local businesses with 25 employees or less. Loan repayment is deferred for the first 12 months. The first round of applications will close on April 28.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs, although the state is exploring options.
Ohio’s Department of Commerce has created a high-proof liquor buy-back program for bars and restaurants that had increased inventory in preparation for St. Patrick’s Day festivities.
Cuyahoga County has launched a $500,000 Small Business Stabilization Fund, offering grants of between $2,500-$5,000 to small businesses affected by COVID-19. The first round opened on April 17 and will close on April 23, with announcements the following week. Businesses also have the option of applying for a larger loan.
The City of Kettering’s COVID-19 Emergency Loan Program offers zero-interest, forgivable loans to local businesses affected by COVID-19. Forgivable loans of up to $5,000 are available to businesses with 25 or fewer employees and with a physical storefront within city limits. Loans have a three-year term. Businesses that are able to retain at least one low- or moderate-income employee for the first three months after receiving the loan will have their loans forgiven; those that are unable to do so will need to repay the loan, although repayment will be deferred for the first year.
The City of Lakewood has created a Small Business Rent Relief Fund, making grants of up to $3,000 to reimburse rent payments. Only businesses operating out of a commercial or retail storefront and with fewer than 50 employees are eligible to apply. The program is funded by the City’s Economic Development Fund and CDBG allocation.
The Middletown Community Foundation has given Downtown Middletown Inc. $20,000 to re-grant to small downtown businesses.
The Norwalk Economic Development Corporation is offering $2,000 Small Business Stabilization Grants to businesses with 15 or fewer FTEs and a commercial storefront and that has been in business for at least six months. Chain stores, franchises, pawn shops, thrift stores, and stores that sell tobacco or vape supplies or firearms are excluded. NEDC is accepting applications through April 26, and awards will be announced on April 28.
Ogden Newspapers has established a $1 million fund to help local businesses by subsidizing local marketing through matching advertising dollars. The fund is open to all locally owned/operated businesses in Seneca County, Ohio, regardless of whether they are current advertisers in The Advertiser-Tribune, the local paper owned by Ogden Newspapers. Grants of up to $15,000 will be given, with the grant money being used for local print and online advertising in The Advertiser-Tribune.
A group of faith-based business partners and philanthropic organizations in Stark County have launched Faith in Stark, a fund providing one-time $5,000 grants to small businesses with 10 or fewer employees. JumpStart Inc., and KeyBank made an initial $100,000 gift to the fund, and the Gessner Family Foundation contributed $50,000. The fund’s organizers hope to raise $1 million.
Oklahoma City has adopted a $5.5 million Small Business Continuity Program, funded from the City’s Strategic Investment Program. The program provides: 1) cash incentives (reimbursement of up to $10,000 for the payroll expenses of retained employees, for businesses with fewer than 15 FTEs), 2) no-interest loans (forgivable loans of up to $50,000 for businesses with up to 50 FTEs, to cover payroll expenses of retained employees), 3) low-interest loans (10-year, two-percent loans of up to $100,000 for businesses with up to 50 FTEs, to cover payroll and some operational expenses), and technical assistance for small businesses. The Program intends to earmark 25 percent of its funding to businesses in low-income census tracts. Applications are accepted between April 6-April 17, 2020.
Small businesses located in Portland’s Jade District or Old Town Chinatown are eligible to receive support through the City’s $190,000 emergency fund. Asian and Pacific Islander business owners get priority.
The City of Beaverton created the Beaverton Emergency Business Assistance Program, offering grants of $2,500 per month for rent or mortgage reimbursement to businesses that have been ordered to close because of the pandemic. Businesses must have a physical storefront in Beaverton and fewer than 50 employees. The Program received a large number of qualified applications and is now closed.
The City of Hillsboro’s $500,000 Small Business Emergency Relief Program offered grants of $5,000 to small businesses to offset their pandemic-related losses. Priority was given to businesses that serve large groups of people (like bars and restaurants) and that have 10 or fewer employees. The City opened the application process on March 23; demand was so overwhelming that the program’s funding was exhausted that same day. The City committed an additional $500,000 to the Program and, like the first round of grants, the second round was depleted the day it opened for applications.
The Pendleton Development Commission’s Retail and Hospitality Relief Program will give $2,000 grants to each of 50 small businesses located within the downtown urban renewal district. The program prioritizes essential businesses. If the City receives more applications than the program’s $100,000 budget, it will select winning applicants by lottery. The program closes on Thursday, April 23.
Umatilla County is offering 68 $1,000 Small Business Emergency Grants for businesses with 25 or fewer employees. The application window will close on April 21, and winning applications will be selected by lottery.
Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development launched a $60 million Working Capital Access Program on March 25, offering small business loans of up to $100,000, zero interest (except for agricultural producers, for whom the interest rate was two percent), with no payments for the first year and principal-only payments for years 2-3. Loans were made for the lesser of three months of working capital or $100,00, and any for-profit business within the Commonwealth with 100 or fewer employees was eligible. The Program was capitalized with $40 million from the Commonwealth Financing Authority’s Small Business First Fund, plus $20 million from the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority. The Program exhausted all its funding within several days and was closed on March 31. As of April 13, a bipartisan group of state legislators is working to recapitalize the Fund.
The City of Philadelphia has created a COVID-19 Small Business Relief Fund, offering grants or zero-interest loans to small, for-profit businesses. The Fund offers $5,000 grants to microenterprises with annual revenues under $500,000; grants of up to $25,000 for businesses with annual revenues between $500,000-$3 million, and zero-interest loans of between $25,000-$100,000 for businesses with annual revenues of between $3-5 million. The Fund was launched with $9.25 million, including $7 million from the City, $2 million from the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority, and $250,000 from the Daniel B. and Florence E. Green Foundation. The Fund was overwhelmed with applications and, as of March 30, was only accepting and reviewing applications from businesses applying for the $5,000 microenterprise grants.
The Greater Easton Development Partnership has spearheaded creation of the Support Easton Small Business Relief Fund, with the goal of raising $300,000 for emergency capital for small businesses. The program has been developed in partnership with the City’s Department of Community and Economic Development. It offers zero-percent loans of up to $10,000, with repayment deferred. The first round of applications will be accepted from April 7-12.
The City of Harrisburg, in partnership with Impact Harrisburg, have created a Neighborhood Business Stabilization Program to make grants of up to $10,000 to Harrisburg businesses whose revenues have dropped by at least 25 percent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Each partner will contribute $500,000. At last half of the grant funds will be reserved for businesses with annual gross revenues of $500,000 or less.
Puerto Rico’s Financial Oversight and Management Board has approved a $500 million relief package for individuals and small businesses. The package includes $1,500 grants for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) with 50 or fewer employees and gross receipts of no more than $10 million. Businesses organized as legal entities (corporations, LLCs, partnerships, etc.) can request this $1,500 grant from the Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DDEC). Self-employed individuals whose businesses are organized as “Doing Business As” may receive $1,500 by combining a $1,000 grant from the DDEC and a $500 grant from the Department of the Treasury. Total allocation for self-employed individuals is $100 million; for SMEs, the total allocation is $60 million.
The East Providence Economic Development Commission is offering two loan programs, one for businesses with fewer than five employees and one for businesses with between 5-10 employees. Both make loans of up to $5,000. The loan program for smaller businesses offers zero-interest, three-year loans with no repayment for six months. The program for larger businesses offers loans at two percent interest, with terms between 12-36 months, and with repayments deferred by six months.
The Pawtucket Business Development Corporation is offering low-interest loans of up to $10,000 for businesses with 25 or fewer employees. Loan repayment is deferred for twelve months; businesses repay the loans in months 13-36.
The Rhode Island Foundation, in partnership with the United Way of Rhode Island, is offering $10,000-$75,000 grants to Rhode Island nonprofit organizations that are providing direct assistance to state residents and that are meeting community needs resulting from COVID-19.
On March 23, the City of Aiken launched a $1 million loan program for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Loans of up to $10,000 are available at two percent interest, with repayment deferred for six months. Security Federal Bank is underwriting and servicing the loans, and the Aiken Chamber of Commerce and The Aiken Corp. are offering loan guarantees. To qualify, businesses must have a brick-and-mortar presence within the city and have fewer than 25 employees.
On March 20, the City of Columbia created a $6 million program to respond to COVID-19 needs, of which $2 million has been earmarked for small business and nonprofit relief. Of that $2 million, $1 million is being used as a loan loss reserve fund through which the City is offering forgivable loans; $500,000 is being used for zero-interest forgivable loans for businesses with fewer than 100 employees; and $500,000 is being used for nonprofit organizations meeting critical needs during the pandemic. The City has redirected money from its water and sewer funds to capitalize the small business relief package.
The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) has created a Small Business Relief fund, offering zero-interest loans of $5,000-$75,000, to for-profit businesses or nonprofit organizations with less than 250 employees that have been operating for at least one year. Proceeds from the loan must be held in a separate bank account within South Dakota, not commingled with other business accounts, and may not be used for distributions or dividends to business owners.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
On April 13, the Bastrop Economic Development Corporation awarded grants totaling $185,000 to 62 Bastrop businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Each business will receive a grant of between $750-9,500. The program was funded from two existing programs – a $150,000 business incentive fund and a $150,000 fund for business expansion or retention. Grants were awarded in eight categories, based on gross revenues and number of employees, with sole proprietors receiving between $750-1,500 and the largest businesses receiving $9,500 each. The program was open only to non-essential businesses, and all businesses that submitted an application received a grant.
Bexar County launched a $5.25 million fund to provide loans and grants for locally owned small businesses hurt by the pandemic. LiftFund, a San Antonio-based loan provider for small businesses, administered the program. The fund was announced on March 23. It received more than 150 applications in its first eight hours and, by the end of that week, had received nearly 650 loan or grant applications, totaling $42 million. The program has been closed.
Main Street Brenham reprogrammed $8,500 from a fund dedicated for Main Street improvement and created a small business relief assistance grant program. The organization awarded $500 grants to 17 small downtown businesses. It is considering a second grant round.
The Buda City Council has created the Still Budaful Stimulus Program to help affected small businesses. The $380,000 program is funded by the City and by the Buda Economic Development Corporation. Local businesses with 50 or fewer employee
s are eligible to apply; chains, home-based businesses, and nonprofits are not eligible.
The City of Fort Worth is partnering with PeopleFund to create a Business Resiliency Microloan Program, offering loans of up to $50,000 to businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. At least 60 percent of the loans will be earmarked for minority-owned businesses and low/moderate-income business owners. Loan repayment is deferred for the first six months, after which the interest rate will be five percent, with loans amortized over a total term of up to 78 months. The $850,000 loan fund is capitalized with $350,000 from the Fort Worth Local Development Corporation and $500,000 from PeopleFund.
The City of Georgetown created a Small Business Support and Recovery Grant, offering grants of up to $5,000 to all local non-home-based businesses, with priority for those that have frequent, close contact with customers. As of April 16, the program was no longer accepting new applications.
The Pflugerville Chamber of Commerce has launched the Pflugerville Pfund, making grants of up to $5,000 for local businesses that have been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses must have 50 employees or less. Businesses may reapply for a second grant after 45 days. The fund was capitalized by donations from the Pflugerville Community Development Corporation, Pflugerville Economic Development Foundation, Recurrent Energy, Montoya & Monzingo CPAs, and the Pflugerville Chamber of Commerce and is being managed by the Greater Round Rock Community Foundation.
The City of Round Rock partnered with several private-sector entities to create Round Rock Cares, a small business relief program. The City, the Greater Round Rock Community Foundation, the Round Rock Chamber, and Dell Technologies contributed $25,000 each to open the fund, and community members boosted the fund to $356,000. The first round of funding closed on April 3, providing financial assistance to 160 small businesses; as of April 14, there were 50 businesses on the waiting list for the second round.
The City of Rowlett has created the Rowlett Business Stimulus (ROBUST) grant program to provide short-term, immediate relief to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic Businesses must have 20 or fewer employees, have a physical and publicly accessible location within the city, and have been in continuous operation for at least six months. Applications will be accepted between April 17-30.
The Texas Woman’s University is administering the Texas AssistHER Emergency Relief Grant program, offering women-owned businesses in Texas grants of $10,000. Grants can be used for technology upgrades or other items needed to adapt a business’s business model.
The Texas Black Expo is providing emergency micro-grants of $1,000 each to at least 100 qualifying businesses. Four corporations – H-E-B, Enterprise Holdings, Chevron, and UPS – are partnering with Texas Black Expo to capitalize the micro-grant program. The first grants will be distributed on April 30.
The Texas Restaurant Association has created the TX Restaurant Relief Fund to keep independent restaurants open. It has a goal of raising at least $10 million, providing $5,000 grants to 2,000 Texas restaurants.
Utah’s Office of Economic Development is offering bridge loans to businesses with 50 or fewer employees. Loans range from $5,000-$20,000, with repayment deferred for one year and no interest payments for up to five years. Loans cannot exceed three months of operating expenses. At least one-quarter of the program’s funds are reserved for businesses in rural areas. Businesses must have been established before January 1, 2020, and they must have employees for whom payroll taxes have been withheld.
Salt Lake City has launched a $1 million Emergency Loan Program, providing zero-interest, five-year working capital loans of up to $20,000 to businesses within the city limits. Repayment will be deferred roughly 90 days after the local COVID-19 emergency expires.
We are not yet aware of any state small business assistance programs, although the state is putting together a business task force to create policy tools to aid in recovery.
The City of Rutland has created a small business relief program with money from the city’s business incentive program. The program made $60,000 in loans of between $5,000-$10,000 to eleven businesses on April 20 and is planning to loan an additional $70,000 through a second round, for which applications are due on April 24.
The Virginia 30 Day Fund, launched by a tech entrepreneur, provides 30-day loans to small businesses waiting for federal funds. Businesses must employ between 3-30 people, be based in Virginia and operating for at least one year, and owned and operated by a Virginia resident. Businesses do not need to repay the loans, although they are encouraged to “pay it forward” to another Virginia small business by repaying the Fund. The application is designed to be completed in 10 minutes or less, and approval takes place within three days, with funds transferred immediately.
Arlington County is working out details of a small grant program for small businesses. The program would offer grants of up to $10,000 each and would be funded by redirecting $674,000 in existing funds.
The City of Charlottesville is offering three small business assistance programs. The Building Resilience Among Charlottesville Entrepreneurs (BRACE) Grant program offers grants of up to $2,000 for local businesses. The Business Equity Fund (BEF) Resiliency Loan program offers loans of up to $5,000 for socially disadvantaged businesses, with loans deferred for three months. The Growing Opportunities (GO) Hire Grant program offers grants in varied amounts for wage subsidies and workforce training.
Danville’s Industrial Development Authority voted unanimously to create three emergency grant and loan programs to help local small businesses: a $300,000 emergency loan program, a $75,000 marketing and e-commerce matching grant, and $50,000-75,000 in small business rent relief. The emergency loan program, which will charge no interest for the first year, is designed as a stopgap until businesses received a replacement loan from the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program. The loan program is capitalized by the IDA’s city-funded loan account and from the City’s economic development office’s incentive account. The $75,000 matching grant is funded by the economic development office’s incentive account and the River District Association. The small business rent relief program will offer grants of up to $3,000 to provide rent reimbursement for one month. Like the matching grant, it is funded by the economic development office’s incentive account and the River District Association.
On April 15, Fairfax County created a $2.5 million Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Fund, providing loans of up to $20,000 to small businesses with fewer than 50 employees and with no outstanding tax liens or legal judgments. Loan repayment will be deferred for six months, after which loans will be repaid at 3.75 percent over a six-year term.
Loudoun County has created a $1 million grant program, the COVID-19 Business Interruption program, using funding transferred from a fund reserved to attract new employers. The program is open to businesses with between 3-100 businesses, annual receipts of less than $2.5 million, and able to demonstrate a 25 percent or greater drop in revenue due to the pandemic. Businesses with 3-50 employees, or home-based businesses with fewer than 100, may request grants of up to $7,500. Those with between 51-100 employees may request grants of up to $10,000. The program will open on April 29.
The City of Staunton and the Staunton Creative Community Fund have partnered to create a $100,000 Emergency-Disaster Relief Loan Fund for small businesses. Loans from $1,000-5,000 are available, with 2-3 percent interest and repayment deferred for up to six months.
The State of Washington has created the Working Washington Small Business Grant program, offering grants of up to $10,000 for small businesses with ten or fewer employees. The $5 million program is using funds from the Governor’s Strategic Reserve Fund and from local economic development organizations. Because of the overwhelming volume of applications the program has received, seven counties are no longer accepting applications, and the state predicts that it will take 4-6 weeks to process and disburse grants.
The City of Lacey is offering working capital grants of up to $10,000 to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses must have 25 or fewer employees, and preference is given to businesses with 10 or fewer. The total pool available is $500,000.
The City of Seattle is making grants of up to $10,000 available to businesses whose owner is low- or median-income, with five or fewer employees (including the owner), and that has experienced a loss of income because of COVID-19. Franchises, chains, and businesses whose patrons must be older than 18 are not eligible.
Spokane Arts created the Spokane Artists & Creatives Fund to support individual artists living in Spokane. the fund was capitalized with $25,000 from Spokane Arts and $14,000 from private contributions and offered $500 grants. The Fund received more requests than it could support and has now closed.
ArtsFund is offering grants of varying amounts to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations in King County through its COVID-19 Arts Emergency Relief Fund. The ArtsFund Foundation seeded the Fund with $1 million and has received more than $1.5 million in additional gifts and pledges.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation has created a Small Business 20/20 grant program, offering grants of up to $20,000 to companies with fewer than 20 employees.
Downtown Kenosha, Inc. created a $100,000 Small Business Recovery Fund to provide stop-gap loans of $1,000-$5,000 to businesses within the downtown business improvement district boundaries, with fewer than 25 employees, and current on taxes. Loans are forgivable after 12 months, based on submitting quarterly reports and payroll verification. Funds may be used for basic operating capital, payroll, insurance, utilities, and certain other expenses. The Fund awarded its first grants to 23 businesses on April 20 and is now raising money for a second round of grants. The Fund is capitalized by several financial institutions and business assistance organizations, plus crowdfunding.
We are not yet aware of any state or local small business assistance programs.
OTHER NATIONAL AND REGIONAL PROGRAMS
There are a number of private-sector COVID-19 small business relief programs that are national or regional in scope. These include:
The Adolph & Esther Gottlieb Foundation is making emergency grants of up to $15,000 to painters, printmakers, and sculptors.
The American Farmland Trust has created a Farmer Relief Fund, providing cash grants of up to $1,000 for small- and mid-size direct-market food producers with annual gross revenue of between $10,000 and $1 million from sales at farmers markets and/or direct sales to restaurants, caterers, schools, stores, or makers who use farm products as materials. The initial application round will close on April 23.
The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts is offering 16 $100,000 grants to artists affected by the COVID-19 pandemic to help cover everyday expenses like food, rent, medical costs, and childcare.
Anonymous Was a Woman has launched a $250,,000 COVID-19 emergency relief grant for women artists over 40. The program offers grants of up to $2,500 for women-identifying visual artists. Applications will be accepted between April 6-April 8, 2020.
The Book Industry Charitable (Binc) Fondation and the American Booksellers Association have launched a campaign – #SaveIndieBookstores – to raise money to support independent booksellers affected by the pandemic. The campaign has attracted some major donors, including a $500,000 gift from author James Patterson, and plans to continue raising money through April 30, at which point it will distribute the money to eligible independent bookstores.
Dating app Bumble offered grants of up to $5,000 to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant program closed to US applicants after reaching $1 million in awards.
The Dramatist Guild Foundation is making emergency grants to musicians/composers, lyricists, screenwriters, journalists, directors, novelists and nonfiction writers.
Equal Sound has created a Corona Relief Fund, offering grants to musicians who have lost income due to a cancelled gig as a result of COVID-19.
The Foundation for Contemporary Arts has created the FCA Emergency Grants COVID-19 Fund to provide grants of $500-$2,500 to freelance artists. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The Fund has received an average of 95 applications per month but is only able to award 12-15 grants.
The Freelancers Union is offering grants of up to $1,000 to freelance writers and artists to cover lost income and essential expenses. As of April 20, the Freelancers Relief Fund had temporarily closed due to overwhelming demand, but the Freelancers Union expects to be able to reopen it.
GoFundMe has created a Small Business Relief Fund, offering $500 matching grants to small businesses raising at least $500 to cover COVID-19-related expenses and losses. GoFundMe, Yelp, and Intuit QuickBooks have each donated $500,000 to the Small Business Relief Fund. GoFundMe has automatically generated a crowdfunding page, with a goal of $2,500, for every small business listed on Yelp.
The International Bluegrass Music Association is making emergency grants to professionals in the business of bluegrass through its Bluegrass Trust Fund.
The James Beard Foundation is raising money to provide relief to food and beverage businesses. The Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund is not yet accepting applications, but business owners can sign up for news on the Foundation’s website.
Kiva is offering crowdfunded zero-interest microloans of up to $15,000, with a six-month grace period.
The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) has launched the LISC Rapid Relief and Resiliency Fund to provide grants of up to $10,000 for small businesses to support ongoing expenses during the pandemic. Verizon has contributed $2.5 million to the fund, and LISC is seeking additional contributions.
MainVest, an investment crowdfunding marketplace, has created the MainVest Main Street Initiative loan program. Brick-and-mortar businesses that launch a capital raise campaign on Main Vest may be eligible for an immediate $2,000 zero-interest loan.
Musicares has created a COVID-19 Relief Fund offering grants of up to $1,000 to music industry professionals to compensate for scheduled work that was cancelled because of COVID-19.
Natural Capital Investment Fund was making grants in Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio (Brown, Butler, Clermont, Hamilton, and Warren Counties), Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, DC, but the Fund was tapped out by the end of its first day of operation (160+ applications in 4.5 hours).
The Otto Bremer Trust has created a $50 million emergency fund, through its Community Benefit Financial Company, to support nonprofit organizations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and Wisconsin.
SheaMoisture has created a $1 million relief fund to support women entrepreneurs and small business owners of color, awarding ten $10,000 grants in April, with additional, unspecified support to black-owned businesses throughout the month.
Spanx and The Spanx by Sara Blakeley Foundation has partnered with Global Giving and donated $5 million to support female entrepreneurs affected by the pandemic by creating The Red Backpack Fund. The Fund will make 1,000 grants of $5,000 each. All grant recipients will also receive an All-Access Pass to MasterClass.
The Sweet Relief Musicians Fund has created a donor-directed relief fund for musicians and music industry workers affected by COVID-19. Sweet Relief provides a fundraising link that affected musicians can share on their social media channels to raise money for vital living expenses, such as rent, utilities, medical bills, and groceries. Twenty percent of all funds raised through the peer-to-peer campaigns are being earmarked for all other musicians applying for COVID-19 aid, and musicians who are unable to meet their fundraising goals are eligible for an emergency grant from these funds.
Truist Financial Corporation has partnered with two Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), LiftFund and Natural Capital Investment Fund, to make grants of $5,000-$25,000 to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. LiftFund is making grants in Alabama, Arkansas (Crittenden County), Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri (Desoto County),Tennessee, and Texas.
The US Chamber of Commerce Foundation has created the Save Small Business Fund, a grantmaking initiative offering short-term relief for small businesses in economically vulnerable communities. The program, which will officially launch on April 20, will make $5,000 grants to as many small businesses as possible. It is funded through private donations from Vistaprint, Travelers, Merck, and S&P Global Foundation.
The Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation is making emergency grants to individuals who work in film exhibition.