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New $45 Million Government Grant Program Prioritizes Black Owned Businesses in New Jersey

Good news for Black owned businesses in New Jersey. The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) recently announced that applications for the expanded Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program will be available at 9:00 a.m. on June 9, 2020.

Only 12% of minority-owned businesses received federal relief funding from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). To address this disparity, NJEDA is reserving $15 million for businesses in Opportunity Zone-eligible census tracts and launching an aggressive and targeted outreach campaign so that businesses in historically underserved communities have increased access and priority for relief.

A sample application that small business owners can use to prepare is available at http://cv.business.nj.gov/.

The NJEDA received $50 million from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund established under the Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to support small businesses.

In Phase 1 of the NJEDA’s Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program, the agency provided more than $8 million in grants to date to nearly 2,500 businesses across all 21 counties.

The NJEDA will now provide an additional $5 million to fund businesses that were waitlisted during Phase 1 and will use $45 million to fund Phase 2.

The new round will provide grants up to $10,000 to qualified applicants and aims to support a wider variety of companies, including home-based businesses and sole proprietorships. The funding is also open to churches and nonprofit organizations.

Eligibility changes for Phase 2 increase the employee cap for businesses from 10 full-time employees (FTEs) to 25 FTEs and remove the NAICS code restrictions that were in place for Phase 1 to allow almost all businesses as well as 501(c)(3), 501 (c)(4), and 501(c)(7) nonprofit organizations to qualify for funding.

Applications for Phase 2 of the Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program will be available on June 9, 2020. NJEDA staff will process the applications on a first-come, first-served basis. There will be no application fee.

As part of the application, the business’s Chief Executive Officer or equivalent officer must certify that the company was in operation on February 15, 2020, has been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, and will make a best effort not to furlough or lay off any employees.

To comply with duplication of benefits provisions within the Stafford Act, all applicants will also be required to fill out an affidavit identifying all funding previously received related to COVID-19, including Small Business Administration loans and grants, forgivable portions of Payroll Protection loans, and Economic Injury Disaster grants.

To learn more about NJEDA resources for businesses call NJEDA Customer Care at 609-858-6767 or visit https://www.njeda.com and follow @NewJerseyEDA on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

 

-Tony O. Lawson

Related: 24 Black Owned New Jersey Businesses


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Feature image: (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

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How To Receive a $5000 Small Business Grant From the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

Vistaprint announced April 14 it has founded the Save Small Business Fund in conjunction with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, donating $1 million to help alleviate the financial losses owners are facing as a result of COVID-19 and help secure additional partner investors.

“Funded by corporate and philanthropic partners, the Save Small Business Fund is a collective effort to provide $5,000 grants to as many small employers as we can. We hope these supplemental funds will help you get through the next days and weeks,” according to the website.

This comes at a time when eight in ten U.S. small businesses report being negatively impacted by COVID-19, according to Vistaprint research.

The Save Small Business Fund application period begins noon Monday. Eligible businesses must employ from 3 to 20 workers, be located in an economically vulnerable community and show that COVID- 19 caused fiscal harm.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation allows those interested in applying for the grants to check their zip code to see if they’re in an eligible location. Click here to check yours.

A short application will go live today, April 20, 2020, at 12:00PM PT.

The application takes about 10 minutes, the foundation said. More details are available at www.savesmallbusiness.com for more information.

-Tony O. Lawson