Business Oregon Announces Third Round of Grants to Serve Small Businesses, Along With Millions in New Funding
By Nathan Buehler
Business Oregon announced the recipients of $5.5 million in grant funding through its Emergency Business Assistance Grant Fund, created by Governor Kate Brown and the Oregon Legislature to assist small businesses impacted by COVID-19. To date, the Fund was disbursed through three rounds of Requests for Proposals (RFPs) from applicants that will assist small businesses in Oregon.
“We’re using everything at our disposal to help small businesses across the state, and working with all of our local and regional partners to make it happen,” said Business Oregon Director Chris Cummings. “As fast as we can get the resources in, we turn them around and get them out into our communities.”
This round solicited proposals from cities, counties, and Economic Development Districts (EDDs). These organizations are intermediaries that will in turn issue grants to local small businesses with fewer than 25 employees, among other parameters. The program also encourages efforts to provide access to sole proprietors and historically disadvantaged business owners.
Cranberry Station Soap Company in Klamath Falls was one recipient of a Business Oregon grant through our regional partner, South Central Economic Development District.
“This has enabled us to keep our store open, and catch up on fixed expenses like insurance, utilities, and phone bills,” said Sue Connelly, owner of Cranberry Station.
Boxcar Hill Campground in North Bend worked with our regional partner CCD Business Development Corp. Boxcar noted the speed at which both CCD and the state made the grant happen to help their situation.
“I found the State of Oregon COVID-19 Emergency Grant application process extremely easy and fast to complete,” said Boxcar Hill owner Todd Goergen. “Thanks CCD for providing small business enterprises located in Coos, Curry and Douglas counties a hassle-free way to apply for this grant program.”
While a total of $10 million in state funds was originally available, new federal CAREs Act funding was recently allocated for the program, up to $22.5 million. $5 million of the new funding is part of the round announced today, and the remainder will be re-distributed to entities that have previously received funds from these first three rounds of the program.
Business Oregon funded each of the 37 applications received. Awards were allocated to achieve a good geographic distribution of funding for small businesses across the state. The average award is $149,0000.