Covid-19 grant/funding opportunities available to our local small business community

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Covid-19 grant/funding opportunities available to our local small business community

Dear Milton Small Business Owner, 

Our community stands with you as we try to cope with the economic fallout from COVID-19.  Whether as customers, friends or neighbors, we know how much you contribute to what makes Milton a great place to live.  

We want you to be aware of three valuable grant programs offered by the region and Commonwealth to assist small businesses with covid-19 related financial losses. You may apply to multiple grants, and combine these with other funding you have received as long as it is for different expenses.

  • Regional Micro-enterprise program (grants up to $10k for business with 5 or fewer employees) – Rolling/no deadline
  • Commonwealth of Massachusetts micro business program (grants up to $25K for businesses with 5 or fewer employees) – November 12, 2020 deadline
  • Commonwealth of Massachusetts small business program (grants up to $75K for businesses with 50 or fewer employees) – November 12, 2020 deadline

Information about eligibility and applications for the regional microenterprise program can be found at https://www.townofmilton.org/planning-community-development

Information on both Commonwealth programs can be found at www.empoweringsmallbusinesses.org/covid-19-response/covid-19-grants-massachusetts-small-businesses

Note: Applications for the State Small Business Grant program must be received by Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation by November 12, 2020, so act now! 

Allyson Quinn, Assistant Town Planner ([email protected]), is a local contact who can provide further information.  


STATE COVID-19 GRANTS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

GRANTS OVERVIEW

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has made $50.8 million in grants available to support small businesses, microenterprises, and their employees, families and communities. Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) will be administering these funds to businesses experiencing economic hardship and a loss of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

These funds were appropriated through the Commonwealth’s Supplemental Budget for Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21) as well as the CARES Act of 2020 and are divided into two programs. 

Grant funding is intended to help businesses adversely impacted by the pandemic. Preference will be given to small businesses whose owners are women, minorities, veterans, members of other underrepresented groups, who are focused on serving the Gateway Cities of Massachusetts, and those most negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Preference will also be given to applicants that have not been able to receive aid from other federal programs related to COVID-19.

    • Timeline: Application will be open for 3 weeks; 10/22/2020 at 12:00 PM – Application opens. 11/12/2020 at 12:00 PM – Application closes.
  • Applicant Eligibility: Each program encompasses its own eligibility criteria, set forth below. Applicants must review the information to determine which program to proceed with applying.

PROGRAM DETAILS

SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS FOR 5 OR FEWER EMPLOYEES

  • AMOUNT OF FUNDING: Up to $25,000
  • APPROVED USE OF FUNDS: Funds may be used for working capital to cover business costs, such as rent, staffing, utilities, and technical assistance, general support and stabilization of the business. Funds may also be used for purchasing personal protection equipment (PPE).
  • NON-APPROVED USE OF FUNDS: Major equipment purchases, purchase of real property, construction activities, business expansion, lobbying. Also, grantees must prevent the duplication of benefits, which means these grant funds may not be used to pay expenses if another source of financial aid has paid that same expense.

SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS FOR 50 OR FEWER EMPLOYEES

  • AMOUNT OF FUNDING: Businesses can receive up to $75,000 but capped at up to 3 months of operating expenses, as evidenced by 2019 Federal Tax Returns. Grant amounts will be considered for actual expenses for 2020 during the pandemic. Expenses can be considered since March 10, 2020, given that expenses do not exceed 3 months of operating expenses evidenced by 2019 Federal Tax Returns.
  • APPROVED USE OF FUNDS: Employee payroll and benefit costs, mortgage interest, rent, utilities and interest on other debt obligations.
  • NON-APPROVED USE OF FUNDS: Major equipment purchases, purchase of real property, construction activities, business expansion, lobbying. Also, grantees must prevent the duplication of benefits, which means these grant funds may not be used to pay expenses if another source of financial aid has paid that same expense.

ELIGIBILITY

SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS FOR 5 OR FEWER EMPLOYEES

  • Business has 5 or fewer employees (1 or more of whom owns the business)
  • Business must provide goods or services to multiple clients or customers
  • The owner(s) of the business must qualify under the Low-Moderate Income (LMI) Limited Clientele national objective criteria. They must earn an annual income equal to or less than 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) based on family size

SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS FOR 50 OR FEWER EMPLOYEES

  • Business has 50 or fewer full-time equivalent FTE employees (1 or more of whom owns the business)

BOTH PROGRAMS

  • Business must have a physical establishment in Massachusetts
  • Business must be a for-profit entity (sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, cooperative or LLC)
  • Business must be able to document a loss of income equal to or greater than requested assistance due to COVID-19
  • Business must be currently in operation or if not in operation must have an intent to reopen.
  • Business must have been established prior to 06/30/2019.
  • Business must be in good standing with the state and city/town:
  • Business must be current on all taxes due through 3/1/2020; and
  • Have active and valid state licenses/registrations, if applicable; and
  • Not a party to litigation involving the Commonwealth or municipality you operate in.
  • Ineligible businesses: Real estate rentals/sales businesses; Businesses owned by persons under age 18; Businesses that are chains; Liquor stores; Weapons/firearms dealers; Lobbyists; or Cannabis-related businesses.
  • Preference will be given to small businesses whose owners are women, minorities, veterans, members of other underrepresented groups, who are focused on serving the Gateway Cities of Massachusetts, and those most negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Preference will also be given to applicants of the greatest need that have not been able to receive aid from other federal programs related to COVID-19

REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION

SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS FOR 5 OR FEWER EMPLOYEES

  • DUNS Number (You can look up your DUNS Number by following the link. If you do not yet have one, you can put in a free, expedited request for a number (24-hour turnaround) by specifying that you are applying for a government grant. Use the Self-Service Portal link: www.dnb.com/govtduns and choose “Federal Government Contractors or Grantees DUNS Number Support”.)
  • A copy of completely filed 2019 Federal Personal Tax Returns for each business owner, including all required schedules.
  • A copy of your Business Lease or Mortgage Bill
  • A copy of the invoice(s) for expenses you wish to use these grant funds to cover. If it is for a future expense, please describe in detail what that expense will be (in 1-2 sentences) and expect to submit proof that the expense was paid within 45 days of receiving your grant award.
  • Optional – 2020 Income Verification Supporting Documentation. Applicants may submit historical documentation to support the projected revenues and expenses with their applications, such as: quarterly tax statements, income statements, sales reports, cash flow statements, and accounts receivable reports as supporting documentation. While not a requirement upon application submission, please note that applicants must provide such documentation if requested by Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development, or the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development at a later date

SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS FOR 50 OR FEWER EMPLOYEES

  • A copy of completely filed 2019 Federal Personal Tax Returns for each business owner with 20% or greater ownership, including all required schedules.

BOTH PROGRAMS

  • A copy of your completely filed 2019 Federal Business Tax Return, including all required schedules
  • A copy of your License to Operate/Business License/Professional Certification, if applicable
  • Completed and signed IRS W-9 Form
  • If your business is a LLC, Partnership or Corporation: A copy of your Certificate of Good Standing from the Secretary of State, not from the Department of Revenue (A Certificate of Good Standing from the Department of Revenue is not required.) All entities organized in other states that operate in Massachusetts must be registered and in good standing in Massachusetts. If you need to request a Certificate of Good Standing, click here: https://corp.sec.state.ma.us/CorpWeb/Certificates/CertificateOrderForm.aspx.
  • If your business is a Sole Proprietorship: A copy of your Business Certificate (DBA) from your city/town

APPLY

Apply for Small Business (<5 employees): https://massgcc2.submittable.com/submit/177584/small-business-grants-for-5-or-fewer-employees

Apply for Small Business (<50 employees): https://massgcc3.submittable.com/submit/177585/small-business-grants-for-50-or-fewer-employees


Confused by the Grant Programs Available? 

Let us compare them for you!

How do I know what grants to apply to and which ones I am eligible for?

 It’s all so confusing!

We have heard those comments many times and decided to try and make it clearer for you. Below is a comparison of grant opportunities and the answers to a few of your questions. 

Currently there are two grants available with Federal funds being administered by Mass Growth Capital Corporation. Check the website for details.

A consortium of towns and cities are administering a microenterprise grant, also with Federal funds.  Check the website for detai

Let’s compare them.

Grant AdministratorGrant Amount # of EmployeesIncome Eligible RequirementBusiness Location DeadlineWebsite
MGCC$25,0005 or fewer including ownerYesAll Towns11/12/2020MGCC
MGCC$75,00050 or fewer FTENoAll Towns11/12/2020MGCC
Consortium Community Development (CDBG)$10,0005 or fewer including ownerYesAshland, Beverly, Burlington, Canton, Concord, Dedham, Essex, Lexington, Manchester by the Sea, Marlborough, Melrose, Milton, Natick, North Reading, Norwood, Randolph, Reading, Sharon, Southborough, Stoneham, Watertown, Winchester, WoburnOngoingMGCC

Questions

  1. Can I apply to all the grants? Sure, but be sure you are eligible for each one.
  2. Can I use the grant funds for similar uses? Yes, but you can’t use the funds for the exact same use. For example; You can use one grant fund for rent for May, June and July and the other grant funding for July, August and September. It is the same use but a different time period and that is acceptable.
  3. Does each of the grants have a minority preference? Yes, MGCC focuses on minorities and the grants administered by Valley has a set aside fund for minorities. If you are not a minority you should definitely still apply if you meet the other criteria.

 

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