West Hartford Small Business and Nonprofit Recovery Grant Program Reopens – We-Ha

The West Hartford City Council has approved the use of American Rescue Plan Act funds to support a small business and nonprofit recovery grant program, and the next phase of the program will begin November 1. 2022.

By Ronni Newton

The City of West Hartford has established a Small Business and Nonprofit Recovery Grant Program to help local businesses that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic or have expended resources on new or enhanced programs in order to directly respond to the negative effects of the pandemic, and because funds remain after the first award period, the program will reopen for applications on November 1, 2022.

In late June, the West Hartford City Council unanimously approved the allocation of $2 million from the city’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to the grant program. West Hartford businesses or nonprofits with 50 full-time employees or fewer, who have been operating in the city since at least January 1, 2020, and who meet the other eligibility criteria were eligible to apply for a one-time grant of up to go up to $10,000.

Two information sessions were held over the summer to assist applicants and answer questions, and so far 134 grant applications have been received according to City Manager Rick Ledwith.

Funds will soon be distributed to all whose applications have been approved, and some applications are still pending following a request for additional information. At least $800,000 will remain in the program, however, and officials plan to continue making grants and will keep the program open until the entire $2 million allocation is exhausted, so that most as many businesses and non-profit organizations as possible can be helped in their recovery. pandemic.

“The Recovery Grant program helps our businesses and nonprofits regain their strength so they can thrive and prosper for years to come,” said Kristen Gorski, Economic Development Coordinator for the City of West Hartford, in a press release.

“Now that the program has been up and running for a few months, we wanted to reintroduce the grant program to make sure companies knew they could take advantage of this fantastic financial opportunity,” Gorski added.

“The health and vitality of our community depends on the success of our small businesses and non-profit sectors,” Mayor Shari Cantor said in a statement. “We understand how difficult and unpredictable the past few years have been for these organizations. They have worked tirelessly to get things done and we hope this grant opportunity will provide some much needed relief.

The grant program will offer reimbursement in two eligible categories, and businesses and organizations can request a total of $10,000 in either or both categories, as applicable:

  • COVID-19 Relief Assistance Grant – for businesses of organizations that can demonstrate the negative impacts of the COVID-19 public health emergency; and
  • New or Enhanced Program Assistance Grant – A new or enhanced program must meet the criteria for direct response to the negative impact of COVID-19.

Details about the program, including specific eligibility criteria and grant guidelines and applications, can be found on the city’s economic development webpage.

Additionally, Denise Whitford, Business Advisor at the Connecticut Small Business Development Center, will provide free, confidential, one-on-one advice and assistance in the application process. She is available at City Hall on Mondays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. To make an appointment, call 860-576-5135 or email. [email protected].

Questions about eligibility and program guidelines can also be emailed to [email protected].

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