CONCORD, N.C. — The COVID-19 pandemic has hit small businesses across the country hard. Cabarrus County leaders are now allocating funds to help businesses in the county recover thanks to funds from the American Rescue Plan.
The county government reports a maximum of $5 million from the plan's the State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds will be used as part of the Cabarrus Recovery Grant's Small Business Support Program. Small businesses in the county have until Oct. 15 to apply for the funds, which are granted one time. The application is found online. Paper copies can be picked up at the county's libraries, Human Services Center, Veteran Services Office, Board of Elections Office, at the Senior Center in Concord, and at the County Manager's Office inside the Government Center.
Small business owners can use the funds for payroll and benefit costs, mortgage and rent payments, utility bills, operating costs, and COVID-19 prevention or mitigation costs. Those costs can include cleaning, testing, the installation of physical barriers, and other related necessities.
The businesses must meet the following requirements:
- Have a location within Cabarrus County that opened before Jan. 1, 2020
- Operate as a for-profit agency
- Have an independent owner/operator
- Employ 50 or fewer workers
- Be able to show a loss of revenue because of the virus
- Be in good standing with all local, state, and federal governments (i.e. being up-to-date with taxes)
- Show 2019 and 2020 federal tax returns with the application
- Meet the county's vendor onboarding requirements
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Businesses who have received previous COVID-19 assistance, including PPP loans, are eligible to apply, but priority may be given to a business that hasn't yet gotten such help. Per federal requirements, ineligible businesses include, but aren't limited to, non-profit businesses, financial businesses primarily engaged in lending, pyramid sale distribution plans, and political organizations.
Since March 2020, Cabarrus County has already dedicated $47.5 million to pandemic recovery efforts, ranging from emergency rental and utility assistance to aid toward local nonprofits in need.