MASON COUNTY MICRO-BUSINESS RELIEF GRANT 2

Monday, January 25, 2021

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THIS GRANT OPPORTUNITY CLOSES FRIDAY,  FEBRUARY 8th, 2021

Overview:

These forgivable loans (‘grants’)  are provided thanks to the Washington State Department of Commerce CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) program. The purpose of these grants is to support micro-businesses with a physical location in Mason County who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and shut-down.

These grants are administered by the Economic Development Council of Mason County (a Mason County, Washington based non-profit organization) and Mason County.

All complete and eligible applications will be entered to win a grant of up to $5,000.

The information provided here in no way implies that any specific amount will be awarded to any specific individual business.

FAQs

Who is eligible to apply for these grants?

Applicants must:

  • Have been officially in business (licensed with the State of Washington) since May 1, 2019;
  • Be federally-legal businesses;
  • Owned by low-to-moderate income earning individuals;
  • Have a physical location in Mason County;
  • Be micro-businesses (have five or fewer employees including the owner) prior to March 17, 2020;
  • Be able to demonstrate a loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic/shut down order;
  • Be sole proprietorships, partnerships, LLCs, S-Corps, and contractors. Franchises, multi-level marketing businesses, and non-profits (any 501 organization) of any kind are not eligible.
  • Be willing to participate in a survey/evaluation if awarded funding.
  • If you have previously received a Mason County Micro-Business Relief Grant you are NOT eligible.

Can I apply if I own multiple businesses?

Yes. However, only one business per owner has the potential of being selected.

How much are these grants for?

The total grant fund is $20,000. Individual awards will be made to selected qualifying businesses for up to a maximum of up to $5,000 per business. Businesses will need to be able to provide a proof of expenses for the specific amount of funding they are requesting that falls under the eligible uses for the grant.

What can I use a grant for?

Eligible uses include: operating expenses, rent, marketing, supplies, utility bills, inventory, consulting/training.

Ineligible uses include: payroll and capital expenses (e.g. computer equipment, machinery, office equipment, vehicles, and software.)

What do I need in order to apply?

If you meet all qualifying criteria, you will need to answer all questions on the application through the application portal when it opens and submit all required documentation including:

  • A copy of your 2019 balance sheet
  • A copy of your March/April 2019 profit and loss statement
  • A copy of your March/April 2020 profit and loss statement

All financial statements must be complete, accurate, and easily comprehensible. Any documentation that does not meet these criteria will not be considered. File types that will be accepted include .pdf, .jpeg, and .png.

When can I apply:

The application will be online only through the portal once it opens. No applications submitted by email will be accepted.

The application portal will open to applicants starting at 9:00 AM PST on January 25th.

The deadline is 5:00 PM PST February 8th at which time the portal will be closed.

If there is money still available after all eligible applications have been reviewed and awarded, we will reopen the application portal upon announcement to the public.

What questions will be on the application?

  • Names/addresses/percentage of ownership of all owners;
  • Address of business location;
  • Business name;
  • Date business was licensed in the State of Washington;
  • Legal business structure (e.g. sole proprietor, partnership, S-Corps, LLC, Contractor, etc);
  • Description of what the business sells;
  • Explanation of how COVID-19 pandemic/shut down has impacted the business;
  • How much revenue was lost in March/April of 2020 as compared to March/April 2019;
  • How many employees the business had prior to the Stay-home/Stay-healthy order;
  • How much money are you asking for and how you intend to use it. You will need to be as specific as possible;
  • Whether you have applied for other CDBG emergency grants or forgivable loans and whether any were awarded to you;
  • You will need to indicate if the Applicant or any owner of the Applicant’s business is presently suspended, debarred, proposed for debarment, declared ineligible, voluntarily excluded from participation in this transaction by any Federal department or agency, or presently involved in any bankruptcy;
  • Plans for sustaining the business if funding is not received;
  • Were you forced to shutter your business?
  • Were you able to keep your business open to some extent?

How are funding decisions made?

Applications will be reviewed after the deadline to ensure applications are complete and applicant businesses are eligible.

All eligible and complete applications will then be divided into three geographic areas for equitable distribution throughout Mason County: Belfair, Shelton, and Hoodsport. Once divided, each area will run a lottery for the grant awards.

When will funding decisions be announced?

Funding decisions will be announced as soon as possible. Due to the anticipated volume of applications, decisions may not be announced until February 15th, 2020. We anticipate funding all $20,000 to eligible applicants by February 25th, 2020.

You will receive confirmation that your application has been received. Due to the anticipated volume of applications, we are asking applicants not to contact us via email regarding the status of their application. Everyone will be notified regarding the outcomes.

How will I receive the funding if I am awarded?

Awardees will be notified and awarded checks will be issued by Economic Development Council of Mason County once all expenses reports and verification have been submitted.

You will need to participate in a survey/evaluation if awarded funding.

What if I need help with or have questions about the application process?

Please send any questions you may have to karin@choosemason.com.

Where is the application?

The online application will be available through the portal once it opens at 9 AM on January 25th at  http://www.choosemason.com/resources/business-resources

Until then, applicants are encouraged to review the application questions listed in the FAQs and prepare their financial reports (balance sheets and profit and loss statements).

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