Small retail, restaurants, personal service businesses hurt by COVID-19 can apply now for Economic Recovery Grants

Oakland County retail stores, restaurants and personal service businesses such as salons and fitness centers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic can now apply for part of the $32 million Oakland Together Small Business Recovery Grant fund.

The grants – which range from $2,500-$10,000 – provide an infusion of capital to support payroll expenses, rent, mortgage payments, utility expenses or other similar ones that occur in the ordinary course of business. The funds come from Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act money allocated to Oakland County by the federal government.

“We know that many of our small businesses have reopened but the losses they suffered while they were closed or operating at reduced capacity are significant and continue to threaten their viability,” Oakland County Executive David Coulter said. “We want to do all we can to help them recover and continue to provide the goods and services that are so important to our residents.”

In June, Coulter requested the county Board of Commissioners allocate $32 million to create the recovery grants. The board unanimously approved the request, with $30 million of the allocation earmarked for small businesses. Only businesses that operate a physical location in Oakland County are eligible to receive grant funds through this program.

Applications are accepted online at www.oakgov.com/covid/grants, which also describes the program in detail and lists the type of eligible businesses, which include:

  • Retail trade
  • Food and lodging
  • Business and personal services
  • Entertainment and recreation
  • Construction and maintenance services

The deadline to apply is August 24. Award determinations will be made about every two weeks until the deadline.

The funds are intended to support for-profit businesses with 100 or fewer employees that suffered actual or anticipated losses from March 2020 through July 2020 due to the pandemic:

  • Experienced a loss of revenue
  • Operated at a reduced level of production, sales, employment or service
  • Fully closed all operations and are now in the process of reopening

Coulter and the board have been aggressive in funding programs and services to help mitigate the economic effects of the pandemic to businesses, communities and residents, devoting more than $100 million to the cause.

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