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Connecticut Establishes COVID-19 Relief Program to Deliver $5,000 Grants to Small Businesses and Nonprofits

  • $50 million program will provide eligible Connecticut small businesses and nonprofits with one-time $5,000 grants
  • Funds can be used for multiple purposes, such as payroll, utilities, or rent
  • Half of the funds will be committed to recipients in the state’s distressed municipalities

Under a new program being launched in Connecticut, eligible small businesses and nonprofits are eligible for a one-time grant of $5,000. The effort aims to help companies struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic to meet payroll or other costs, including rent, utilities, inventory, machinery or equipment purchases, or expenses to comply with the state’s safety requirements for reopening.

Governor Ned Lamont today announced the creation of the $50 million Connecticut CARES Small Business Grant Program, which uses money from the state’s Coronavirus Relief Fund. This fund includes money from the federal CARES Act issued earlier this year.

Companies or nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees or a 2019 payroll of less than $1.5 million are eligible for the grants. Applicants must also meet other requirements, including a demonstrated year-over-year revenue loss of at least 20 percent and a founding date of no later than Oct. 1, 2019.

Half of the funding will be disbursed to the 25 cities and towns in Connecticut that have been designated as distressed municipalities. The Department of Economic and Community Development is administering the program, and anticipates that it will begin accepting applications the week of Nov. 9 and disburse all funds by Dec. 30.

Connecticut previously allocated $41.8 million in loans to 2,122 companies to provide financial assistance during the pandemic. The announcement of the Connecticut CARES Small Business Grant Program comes shortly after the state announced $9 million in grants to support the state’s performing arts industry.

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