Application Period Opens Today for Safety First Small Business Grant Program

Coconut Telegraph

SRQ DAILY FRESHLY SQUEEZED CONTENT EVERY MORNING TUESDAY JUL 14, 2020

Beginning tomorrow, July 14, Manatee County small businesses may apply for a one-time grant of up to $5,000 to support continuity of business operations by ensuring small businesses can reopen safely through the Recover Manatee Safety First Small Business Grant Program.

The funding is available to Manatee County small businesses that demonstrate a business loss due to COVID-19. Small businesses with 15 employees or less and located in the County and the cities of Bradenton, Palmetto, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria, Bradenton Beach and the Town of Longboat Key are eligible to apply for one-time grants of up to $5,000.

The application and more information on the program are available at www.mymanatee.org/manateecares The application window opens tomorrow and will close Friday, July 24 or once 500 applications are received. Applicants are asked to review eligibility requirements and FAQs on the site before calling a special helpline at (941) 745-6271 or emailing recovermanatee@mymanatee.org to ask for help.

“There’s a finite amount of dollars that we have received to assist a large number of small businesses in Manatee County,” said Geri Lopez, director of the Redevelopment and Economic Opportunity department overseeing the program. “We know there will be a very high demand for this one-time assistance program. We’re just asking for patience through the process. We’re hopeful that this funding will help small businesses resume operations and meet CDC guidelines for public safety.”

To be eligible for this grant, a business must meet the eligibility guidelines as set forth below and can then file an online application with the Redevelopment & Economic Opportunity Department.

The applicant will describe their reopening plan and which of the eligible uses of funds they intend to utilize.

Eligibility Guidelines

The recovery grant is designed to assist Manatee County’s small businesses that have been significantly impacted by the Governor’s Safer at Home Orders.

These include:
— Retail
— Personal Services
— Medical/Dental Practice
— Restaurant/Bar/Cafe
— Hospitality/Tourism
— Childcare Services

Businesses that meet the following criteria are eligible to apply:
— Has recorded losses related to the Governor’s Safer at Home Act;
— Up to 15 full-time equivalent employees (FTE);
— Located in Manatee County including all municipalities;
— Not operating as a non-profit, or not-for-profit;
— Does not have code and/or regulation violations that have resulted in outstanding fines or liens;
— Does not have unpaid utility bill;
— Has not received any awards from the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and/or Paycheck Protection Program (PPP);
— Is registered with the State of Florida, or can provide Department of Revenue (DOR) filing, or can provide IRS Forms 941, W3, or 1120;
— Not home-based, unless a home-based childcare business;

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