By: Richard L. Smith
Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes reported another initiative for the business community -- the Mercer County Small Business Grant Program.
According to county officials, the grant program, which dedicates $3.5 million of American Rescue Plan Act dollars, will provide direct aid to Mercer County small businesses that have likely experienced pandemic hardship.
Executive Hughes said the focus will be on businesses with physical storefronts in Mercer County, with a maximum amount of $10,000 allocated per grant.
"Small businesses are the lifeblood of our local economy, creating jobs and spinoff businesses and bringing stability to our communities” -County Executive Hughes.
"This infusion of financial support will boost local businesses that have been hard hit during the Pandemic. We are grateful to the Federal Government for providing meaningful relief for our residents and business owners."
County officials said The Small Business Grant program falls on the heels of another small business program recently announced by Executive Hughes, the Small Business Investment Program.
Here are ways you can apply for the small business grant:
The application portal for the Small Business Grant Program will be open soon. GrantWorks Inc will complete the implementation of the program.
GrantWorks was procured to provide ARPA Program Management services for Mercer County.
GrantWorks provides an online application portal that will be accessible via mobile phone, tablet, or computer.
This portal will allow for easy document uploads via traditional document upload methods or via photo capabilities of mobile devices. After the collection of application and eligibility documentation, GrantWorks will review applications and request additional documentation as needed.
Grant funds will be delivered as a bank check made payable to the person or entity identified on the business's N.J. registration.
As a recipient of the "American Rescue Plan Act Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds" (CSLFRF), the County of Mercer is seeking to use a portion of this assistance to establish a small business grant initiative known as the Mercer County Small Business Grant Program.
Under the CSLFRF, the County is permitted to direct these recovery dollars to small businesses so that they may use the grant funds to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
On Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023, Mercer County Commissioners approved an allocation of $3,500,000.00 for the implementation of this program. President Biden's American Rescue Plan Act provides direct relief to those affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic.
The U.S. Department of Treasury awarded the County of Mercer $71.3 million in funding.