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New program will provide reimbursement for COVID-19 expenses

The Monmouth County Board of County Commissioners has announced a new Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program for small businesses, microenterprises and nonprofits that are located in or provide services to eligible low- or moderate-income areas throughout the county.

The CDBG-CV program will provide up to $20,000 per business or organization for the reimbursement of eligible expenses associated with preparing, preventing and/or responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a press release.

“We are proud to be able to provide additional financial support to our small business and nonprofit communities in Monmouth County and help them as they continue to recover from the devastating impact of COVID-19,” Commissioner Director Thomas A. Arnone said. “The board encourages all small businesses and nonprofits to see if your organization is eligible by visiting www.monmouthcountynj-cdbgcv.org”

“These CDBG-CV grants will cover costs including but not limited to staffing, rent, operating expenses, materials and supplies, utilities and/or renovations to facilities for the protection of employees, customers, clients and patrons during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Commissioner Deputy Director Susan M. Kiley said. “These grants will offer organizations an opportunity to recover eligible expenses and continue to serve our communities.”

Eligible expenses for microenterprises and small businesses include: payroll; rent; supplies, machinery, and/or equipment including personal protective equipment (PPE), and materials needed to operate and/or maintain a safe work environment for staff and patrons from COVID-19; utilities; employee training; building renovations, rehabilitation, or alterations for the protection of employees and clients/patrons from COVID-19; and expenses necessary for the long-term establishment, stabilization and expansion of microenterprises.

Eligible expenses for nonprofit public service purposes include: staff cost for program delivery that benefits low-and moderate-income households; rent of space for program operations; LMI program costs including supplies, machinery, equipment including PPE, and materials needed to operate and/or maintain the portion of a facility in which the public service is located; LMI program capacity expansion; utilities; WIFI/communication enhancements, upgrades, or expansions; and building renovations and/or alterations for the protection of employees and clients/patrons from COVID-19.

The county has received direct funding in the amount of $7.29 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. Funds will be administered through the CDBG program and are subject to HUD program rules and requirements, according to the press release.

Small businesses, microenterprises and nonprofits in Asbury Park, Long Branch and Middletown are not eligible for the CDBG-CV program at this time as all three communities have their own separate and distinct CDBG grant program, according to the press release.

For more information, visit www.monmouthcountynj-cdbgcv.org or call 732-624-6570 between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, or between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday.

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