We received the following press release issued by Kent County and the Grand Rapids Chamber.
GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. (November 19, 2020) – Kent County, in partnership with the Grand Rapids Chamber, announces an expansion of the Kent County Small Business Recovery Program providing grants to help businesses affected by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services health orders that went into effect yesterday.
“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a devastating impact on many small businesses,” said Kent County Board of Commissioners Chair Mandy Bolter. “Businesses forced to shut down or curtail operations around the holidays may not recover unless we act quickly to provide relief.”
This expansion is aimed at businesses that must close or severely limit normal operations as of today, including restaurants, bars, theatres, entertainment venues, group fitness classes, bowling centers, ice-skating rinks and others as stated in the public health order. The Grand Rapids Chamber will reach out to qualifying businesses that have not already received Kent County Small Business Recovery Program grants as well as existing grant recipients who may qualify to receive supplemental funding. The new short-term economic relief grants will range from $5,000 to $20,000.
“We need to ensure the sustainability of our small business community in the coming months as we navigate the winter months and await further direction of preventative vaccines,” said Dante Villarreal, vice president of business and talent development for the Grand Rapids Chamber. “This funding is the bridge our community needs to move forward into 2021.”
In June, the Kent County Board of Commissioners approved a plan to disperse $25 million in federal CARES Act dollars to small businesses in the form of grants and technical assistance. The expansion program will allocate $5 million in federal CARES Act funding to businesses who must once again close their doors or limit operations.
Businesses affected by the new order and with 50 or fewer fulltime employees can apply for funding on the Chamber’s website. The Kent County Small Business Recovery Program is nearing its final stage, and funding will soon be exhausted. Businesses should not wait to apply, as funds will soon be depleted.