Personal service businesses like spas and tailors have faced major challenges over the past two years. But a new grant program from American Express and Main Street America wants to help.
And that’s not the only small business grant opportunity unveiled this week. Massachusetts launched two programs. And several more are available throughout the East Coast. Read on to find the best small business grant opportunities for your business.
American Express and Main Street America Inclusive Backing
American Express and Main Street America have partnered on a $1.65M year-round grant program. Inclusive Backing aims to provide money and resources to underrepresented small businesses in four cycles throughout the year. The program will provide $5,000 to 250 small businesses, with preference given to underrepresented entrepreneurs, those disproportionately affected by COVID, and those located in older or historic commercial districts. This year’s second grant cycle is open now through March 1. This round focuses on personal service-based businesses like dry cleaners, beauty salons, and barbers.
Massachusetts Inclusive Grant Program
The state of Massachusetts launched a new round of funding for small businesses this week. The Inclusive Grant Program targets businesses that serve socially and economically disadvantaged markets or historically underrepresented groups. This includes businesses owned by minorities, women, veterans, disabled individuals, and members of the LGBTQ+ community. The program includes $50 million, funded by the American Rescue Plan Act. And businesses can apply for up to $75,000 now through April 4.
Massachusetts New Applicant Grant Program
Massachusetts also created a new grant program to help businesses that have not yet received any pandemic relief funds. The New Applicant Grant program offers $25 million in total funds, to be distributed in grants of $75,000 or less. Businesses must demonstrate economic loss due to COVID and have no previous grants from state programs. The application deadline is April 4. ??
Rockland County Small Business Assistance Grant Program
The Rockland County, New York Small Business Assistance Grant Program includes $250,000 in grant funding. For-profit small businesses located within Rockland with 25 employees or less are eligible for grants between $5,000 and $15,000. Grants must be used to cover expenses like rent and inventory incurred after March 3, 2020. Eligible businesses can apply online or by mail.
Morris County Small Business Grant Program
The Morris County Small Business Grant Program originally launched in February with a $5 million fund. This week, the County Board approved an extra $5 million to support more small businesses. Eligible local companies can apply for grants of up to $15,000 to reimburse various pandemic-related expenses incurred on or after March 3, 2021. The city is also hosting a town hall meeting to help local businesses apply.
Newport News Micro-Enterprise Grant Program
The Newport News, Virginia Micro-Enterprise Grant Program offers more than $100,000 to small businesses in the Southeast community. The pilot program aims to help companies with five or fewer employees. The city has about $106,000 in funding through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant Funds and the Department of Housing and Community Development FY22 Resurgence Grant Funds. Eligible businesses can apply for up to $3,500. Funds will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis. And applications are expected to be available online shortly.
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