ESTES PARK — After an avalanche of requests for relief grants from businesses in the Estes Valley affected by the shutdowns ordered during the COVID-19 crisis, two agencies have been forced to stop accepting applications.
The tourist-dependent mountain town’s Board of Trustees on April 17 awarded the Estes Park Chamber of Commerce and Estes Park Economic Development Corp. $150,000 for distribution as business-relief grants, money that represented 60 percent of the town’s $250,000 community relief fund. As a result, the chamber and EDC received more than 100 applications from small businesses, containing requests totaling more than four times the amount of funding available.
According to an EDC release, “we are currently vetting the applications against the loan criteria and will be distributing funds soon. Though every applicant may not be awarded the full amount of their request, we are working to help as many businesses as possible while also making the biggest impact possible.”
Applications are being vetted in the order they were received. Qualified applicants were to be contacted beginning Monday with more information about their grant and when they can receive it. The EDC and chamber hope to complete the distribution of grants by Friday.
The EDC and the town’s Advanced Recovery Team also have assembled a group of volunteer business advisors to work with business owners as the town and state move toward phased reopening. For one-on-one business guidance, contact Thomas Cox at @estesparkedc.com.