Many companies and individuals are lamenting the end of programs that have financially supported them during the pandemic. But the well did not dry up – there is a lot of money left in state coffers for small business grants.
As the year ends, businesses will lose the opportunity to apply for an EIDL loan. Other federal programs are ending as well, including the $500/month Child Tax Credit; The student loan repayment suspensions were set to expire soon, but have now been extended through May.
This is where states come in. Even if you have received cash in the past, more programs are coming online to distribute cash which in many cases seems plentiful. In New York, for example, the $800 million Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program had spent only $190 million by the end of September, according to a report by the agency. New York is also awaiting federal instructions to open a $377 million small business credit initiative.
To see what other states are doing, see the Inc. guide. , or look at state and local government websites—this one is from Kansas—to see if more is available. Some large cities are also saving the money. Los Angeles recently announced that it would distribute $25 million via $5,000 “return checks” to 5,000 companies, and Illinois announced a new $250 million program in August. The combination of new programs and money left over from existing programs means that each company must check to see what they may qualify for at the state and local levels.
Applications remain open for these grants and similar loans in many states and localities across the country, often funded with federal dollars earmarked during the height of the pandemic. Eligibility varies by location. For Los Angeles, its $5,000 grants will be distributed through a “weighted lottery” and exclude certain drug, alcohol, and firearms-related businesses, as well as national franchises.
In some places, grants are targeted for hard-hit industries, such as hospitality and entertainment, or for medical research. In New York, for example, there is a $40 million program specifically to “encourage and accelerate the development and commercialization of solutions to serious infectious disease threats.”