New Grants Available for Businesses Struggling Through the Pandemic

New Grants Available for Businesses Struggling Through the Pandemic

LANSING - More state funded grants are on the way for small businesses in Michigan that continue to be battered by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Organizations like the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), Lansing Regional Chamber and Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) are providing new grants for businesses struggling through the pandemic.

The Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau (GLCVB) and Lansing Chamber hosted a virtual roundtable discussion regarding the much awaited Restaurant Revitalization Fund on March 31, 2021.

According to the Lansing Chamber, the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund, part of the Biden Administration's $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act, will offer direct grants to restaurants and other qualifying food businesses, offering urgent relief to ailing establishments.

The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, and amended by the American Rescue Plan Act.

According to the SBA, the program includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance. Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees.

Eligible entities include, live venue operators or promoters, theatrical producers, live performing arts organization operators, relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums who meet specific criteria, motion picture theater operators, talent representatives and each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements.

Eligible businesses are encouraged to start preparing paperwork before the application window opens today, April 8.

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, MEDC, in conjunction with the Detroit-based crowdfunding platform, Patronicity, has developed “MI Local Biz,” a creative funding mechanism to offer quick access to capital for small local businesses in need.

The MEDC will match crowdfunding raises on a 1:1 basis up to $5,000 for eligible small businesses experiencing economic challenges as a result of COVID-19, however applications for the program are now closed.

According to a Jan. 14 LEAP press release, the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) has approved a Small Business Survival Grants program, administered by MEDC in partnership with regional economic development organizations around the state.

The survival grant program will specifically assist small businesses and nonprofits impacted by the state Health Department Dec. 2020 Gatherings and Mask Order. LEAP will receive $3 million to provide 194 $15,000 working capital grants to eligible small businesses and nonprofits across Clinton, Eaton and Ingham counties.

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