Small businesses with physical storefronts will soon have access to more grant funds.
Mercer County’s small business grant program has been provided with $3.5 million from the Mercer County Board of Commissioners to administer additional relief to small businesses in the county that faced hard times during the coronavirus pandemic.
The $3.5 million that has been provided to the program comes from federal funds the county received due to the American Rescue Plan Act.
“Small businesses are the lifeblood of our local economy, creating jobs and spinoff businesses, and bringing stability to our communities,” County Executive Brian Hughes said.
According to Hughes, each grant has a maximum amount of $10,000 that will be awarded to small businesses who qualify and apply.
“This infusion of financial support will be a boost to local businesses that have been hard hit during the pandemic, and we are grateful to the federal government for providing us with meaningful relief for our residents and business owners,” he said.
A date has not been announced by the county for when the small business grant program will be open for business owners to apply. When the portal does open the businesses that have been approved through the process for the $10,000 grants will receive the funds in a bank check.
The small business grant program is in addition to the county’s creation of the small business investment program in efforts to provide relief for small businesses in Mercer County that faced difficult times during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The small business investment program will provide up to $500,000 in funds for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and businesses that have had difficulties obtaining relief through other means such as loans.
In December, Mercer County Commissioners approved a resolution that authorizes the search for a consultant to manage the county’s new small business investment program.
The consulting services contract for the new small business investment programs will run through Sept. 30, 2026, according to the resolution.
Once a consultant is in place, any small businesses in Mercer County that qualifies for the relief will be able to apply for the allocated funds from the county.
In the United States, according to a 2022 CNBC report, small business owners in a survey said the biggest challenge they face coming out of the pandemic has been revenue.
The second biggest challenge has been inflation costs.
For more information on the small business grant program or small business investment program, visit www.mercercounty.org.