FORT COLLINS – Fort Collins has launched a grant program to help small businesses as they recover from impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Businesses that have fewer than 50 employees and generate less than $500,000 in annual revenue are eligible, along with solo entrepreneurs, artists and musicians who had challenges that were attributed to or aggravated by the pandemic and its related public-health crisis. Those challenges could include reduced revenue from ongoing spikes in COVID cases, increased expenses from supply-chain issues, increased costs for salaries and hiring.
The first round continues through Aug. 30, while the second is set for Oct. 3-31.
Applicants may request up to $10,000 in total funding within the goal areas: stabilization, technical assistance, and workforce and talent acquisition.
Stabilization grants of up to $7,500 are meant to help businesses that have lost at least 15% in revenue from COVID-19-related difficulties. A combination of revenue loss and expense increase is acceptable to meet the 15% threshold.
Technical-assistance grants of up to $5,000 are meant to help small businesses connect with subject-matter experts to obtain key business infrastructure or knowledge they need to feel stable and/or resilient.
Workforce and talent-acquisition grants of up to $2,500 are meant to respond to workforce conditions and help fulfill the workforce demands of Fort Collins businesses through upskilling or reskilling existing employees with training, workplace improvements and bonuses for employees.
Entities not eligible for the grant program include: those based outside city limits; corporate-owned franchises; publicly traded companies; businesses involved in real-estate investment, multi-level marketing, adult entertainment or firearms; businesses owned or operated by officials or employees of the city of Fort Collins, and activities that support a religious purpose. Also ineligible are school districts; cannabis-related organizations because the grant funding comes from the federal government; and programs, projects or organizations that already receive funding from the city.
Nonprofits are not eligible if they already receive annual funding from the city as part of their ongoing operating revenue, or whose mission is advocacy and do not provide program services to the public.
Entities receiving stabilization grants are prohibited from using the money to pay utility bills.
A virtual workshop to provide information about the grant program will be held at 9 a.m. Monday. Those interested can register at https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZclf-qsqzwsHtI3ram7KiUQfyaNd3gMYYZY although viewing a workshop is not required to register for the grant.
For more information, contact Ashley Gutierrez at 970-221-6393 or firstname.lastname@example.org.