CT Creates $50M Grant Program for Small Businesses & Nonprofits

The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) recently created a $50 million grant program to help small businesses and nonprofits in the state recover from the ongoing challenges of COVID-19. Those that meet the qualifications can receive a one-time $5,000 grant and should receive the funds by December 30, 2020.

The online application should be available the week of November 9, 2020 on this page. You will also be able to access information webinars and updates on the program on that same page.

 Are you eligible?

  • Business must have no more than 20 total FTEs in 2019 across all of their Connecticut locations, or have total 2019 payroll of less than $1.5 million (annualized). FTE and payroll include affiliated companies.
  • Businesses must be able to demonstrate a 20% or more loss in revenue year to date as of September 30th, 2020 compared with the same period in 2019. 
  • Business must have been established by October 1, 2019 and still be active (as verified by DRS).
  • Home-based businesses are eligible.
  • Eligible entities: for-profit businesses that use any type of incorporation, as well as 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4), 501(c)(6), 501(c)(7), and 501(c)(19) nonprofit organizations.
  • The business must remain a viable business, be planning to reopen, and be planning to rehire any workers let go due to COVID as business conditions recover, and have a material financial need that cannot be overcome without the grant of emergency relief funds.
  • Companies must be in good tax standing with DRS or current on a payment plan or consent to use a portion and/or all of their grant to remedy the delinquency.
  • Sole proprietorships are eligible.

Eligibility Exclusions

  • Businesses in which the majority of revenue is earned from the following activities:
    • Liquor stores and alcohol distributors; adult businesses such as strip clubs; vape retailers; tobacco shops and smoking lounges; businesses having to do with gambling; gun stores and ranges; cash advance, check cashing, or pawn shops; bail bonds; collection agencies or services; and auction or bankruptcy or fire or “lost-our-lease” or “going-out-of-business” or similar sale.
    • Business establishments that are 50% or more owned by another establishment such that the FTE count for the umbrella establishment (when counting the FTEs of all subsidiaries in which the umbrella establishment has 50%+ stakes) is more than 500. For example, this would include non-franchised outlets of major national food and retail chains.
  • Businesses and not-for-profit entities may not participate in this program if they received another assistance grant from State of Connecticut CRF funds.

Eligible Activities & Uses

  • Payroll
  • Rent/Mortgage
  • Utilities 
  • Inventory 
  • Purchase of Machinery and/or Equipment 
  • Cost associated to ensure compliance with CT Reopen Business Sector Rules

How Funds Will Be Allocated

  • $25 million to businesses/nonprofits located in the state’s distressed municipalities
  • $25 million to businesses/nonprofits located outside of the state’s distressed municipalities
  • Applicants will only be allowed a single grant regardless of multiple locations 
  • All funds will be disbursed to approved applicants by December 30, 2020

Check back to their site closer to the November 9 application date to learn more or apply. We are happy to answer any questions you have or help you as well, so don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance.

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