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Grand Rapids expands COVID adaptation grants to help more businesses

covid adaptation program.jpg
Posted at 11:38 AM, Oct 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-25 11:38:46-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Grand Rapids’ Economic Development Office is expanding eligibility for grants up to $10,000 to both businesses within the city’s Neighborhoods of Focus and businesses within one of its Corridor Improvement Authority boundaries.

About $165,000 in COVID Adaptation Program CARES Act funding is left to help businesses recoup money spent to adapt to the pandemic, according to a news release Monday.

Since July, the city has given grants totaling $100,000 to 12 businesses located in the city’s Neighborhoods of Focus, according to Economic Development Director Jeremiah Gracia.

While businesses located in these neighborhoods can still apply for funding, eligibility has also been expanded to help more businesses.

Grant applications can be submitted here.

Fully completed applications will be evaluated in the order they are received until all funding has been allocated.

Business adaptations eligible for grant assistance include technology, furniture, fixtures and equipment purchases – including personal protective equipment – that are necessary because of COVID-19.

Costs must have been incurred on or after March 1, 2020, and there is no matching requirement for the grant.

Day-to-day business expenses like rent, payroll and utilities aren’t eligible costs for this particular program.

Businesses also need to meet the following requirements:

  • Have between one and 25 employees (owner may be an employee) 
  • Be a for-profit business 
  • Have a physical location 
  • Be in a Neighborhood of Focus or within the boundaries of a CIA 
  • Have been in business since at least March 1, 2020 
  • Comply with local, state and federal laws (marijuana-related businesses are not allowed) 
  • Demonstrated loss of revenue because of the COVID-19 pandemic 
  • Not owe past due taxes, fines, fees or other debts to the city 
  • Retain at least one full-time equivalent or low- to moderate-income job 

Businesses that previously received grants from the city for working capital expenses are eligible to apply to this program if they are in the Neighborhoods of Focus or within the six CIA geographic areas and meet all other eligibility requirements.