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Need $5K or $10K Grant for Small Business to Survive COVID? Apply Now.
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By David Taub, Senior Reporter
Published 4 years ago on
May 26, 2020

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The city of Fresno is taking applications for the second round of Save Our Small Businesses Act funding.

“This is another critical step helping our local mom and pop shops as we’re rebuilding Fresno’s economy and securing thousands of important jobs.” — Fresno City Councilman Mike Karbassi

Small businesses — defined as 25 or fewer employees — are eligible for grants of either $5,000 (for businesses with 1-5 employees) or $10,000 (between 6-25 employees). Because the second round of the program is funded through federal stimulus money, no repayment is required.

Interested businesses can apply by clicking this link.

The application period starts today at noon and requests are due at 11:59 p.m. on June 5.

One of the program’s authors, Fresno City Councilman Mike Karbassi, said businesses that weren’t selected in the first round will need to reapply.

116 Received First Round Funding

In March, the Fresno City Council approved the first round of funding from $750,000 from city coffers. More than 2,600 businesses applied, with 118 businesses awarded funds. Because there were more applicants than money available, a lottery was held for qualified applicants.

Recipients received a 0% interest loan, forgivable if the business remains in operation for one year.

Like the first round, the second round of winners will be spread around the seven council districts.

With $2 million set aside for this round of funding, between 200 and 400 more businesses will receive help.

“I am thrilled the mayor and council have prioritized finding funds to help small businesses weather this storm. This is another critical step helping our local mom and pop shops as we’re rebuilding Fresno’s economy and securing thousands of important jobs,” Karbassi said.

Photo of Eat-It-Up Catering
Teri Sanchez’s Eat It Up Catering, which is in District 1, received a $5,000 0% loan in the first round of funding. (GV Wire/David Taub)

Eligibility Requirements

According to the city, to be eligible, “The business must have a valid City of Fresno Business License Tax Certificate, have been in business no later than February 15, 2020, cannot have any outstanding code enforcement or conditional use permit (CUP) violations or have received relief funding at the local, state or federal level.”

Applicants must have faced a negative impact from COVID-19.

The money can be used for payroll and benefits, rent or mortgage, unpaid utilities, or supplies to safely reopen the business.

Funds cannot be used for capital improvements or other normal business purchases.

The types of businesses will also be restricted, which wasn’t the case in the first round.

For example, professional services such as legal and accounting are not eligible. Several law firms received funding in the first round.

Businesses owned by a council member or city staff (or their spouses) are not eligible.

Other Programs

There are other grant programs at the local and federal levels.

The city of Fresno has separate programs for small local farmers, as well as renters.

The county has a similar business grant program for any businesses within Fresno County. The deadline to apply is Monday, June 1, and applications can be found at this link.

Businesses can also access federal programs through the Small Business Administration, including the Paycheck Protection Program.

 

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David Taub,
Senior Reporter
Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email

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