EDC Awards 42 Grants to Aid Local Small Businesses
MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - The Meridian Economic Development Corporation (EDC) approved 42 grant awards on Friday, May 29th, for their Small Business Relief Grant Program.
This program was approved by the Township Board to assist local small business affected by COVID-19. A six-person committee reviewed and scored the 91 grant applications that were submitted.
The committee followed the grant program eligibility and criteria in order to decide who to give the grants to. The criteria was scored out of a 100 points within five categories. Which includes Economic Distress, Community Impact or History in Meridian, Working Capital Need, Uniqueness of Product, Service, or Offering, and Business Owner Residency. By using this scoring method, the committee was able to recommend 42 finalists.
Denise Applegate-Wolbrink from Tshirt Goods talked about how happy they were when they received one of the grants, and how thankful they are to their community.
“We were very very pleasantly surprised,” Applegate-Wolbrink said. “We really, really appreciate the support from the community for our business."
The grant program got its funding from two different sources. The Meridian Redevelopment Fund provided $130,000 and the Meridian EDC funded $50,000 itself. The EDC generated part of this money from its service as a bond fiduciary.
The Economic Development Director, Ken Lane, spoke about how much help these grants will help the small business they were awarded too. He said that some of the awardees planned to use the money to pay rent, pay utilities, make payroll requirements, and purchase items that will allow them to safely reopen.
“We’re really happy to assist,” Lane said. “I think it was a great program that the township implemented, and I was very happy and proud to be a part of it."
More information about the Small Business Relief Grant Program can be found on the Meridian Township's Website following this link here.