Today, the Commonwealth announced a new $75 million grant program to support Massachusetts small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The new program is part of the plan to spend $4 billion in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding that was passed by the House of Representatives in December 2021.
The new program is modeled after Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation’s (MGCC) successful COVID-19 small business relief program. Under that effort, which became the biggest state-sponsored business relief program in the nation, MGCC oversaw the distribution of approximately $705 million to over 15,000 small businesses across Massachusetts.
The $75 million will be focused on small businesses that employ between two and 50 people, with $25 million directed toward businesses that did not qualify for previous MGCC grants because of a lack of revenue loss in 2020, and $50 million directed to businesses that reach underserved markets and historically underrepresented groups, or are minority-, women-, or veteran-owned businesses, or are owned by individuals with disabilities or who identify as a member of the LGBTQ+ community.
Under both categories, grants will range from $10,000 to $75,000, and will be capped at the lesser of $75,000 or three months of operating expenses. Grant funding can be used for employee and benefit costs, mortgage interest, rent, utilities, and interest on debt.
In addition to prioritizing applications from businesses that did not qualify for prior aid and businesses owned by individuals from historically underserved populations or operate in underserved markets, eligible businesses must currently be in operation and based in Massachusetts. Applicants must also demonstrate that business revenues for 2020 were between $40,000 and $2.5 million.
Learn more at EmpoweringSmallBusiness.org.