City: CARES Act funds available for small businesses

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WILMINGTON — Mayor John Stanforth announced a new Small Business Emergency Relief Grant Program from funds made available through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).

“Our small businesses drive our local economy and it was important to create a program that looked out for them,” stated Stanforth. “Several of the relief programs excluded a lot of small businesses and I believe this program reaches many of the businesses that felt left out of the relief packages.”

The Mayor’s Office and the Auditor’s Office partnered to create a grant program to receive applications and administer the $100,000 of CARES Act money designated for the grant program in award amounts up to $10,000.

City Administrator Marian Miller said, “We wanted to establish a responsible grant program but also a process that was easy for our already overwhelmed small businesses. We want to be judicious with the funds but find a way to get the grant money into the businesses that are in need as quickly as possible.”

Auditor Mary Kay Vance and Marian Miller worked with Dessie Rogers, Wilmington-Clinton County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, to ensure the grant met the requirements by the Office of Budget Management but also met the needs of the local businesses.

Applicants have from Sept. 1 through Sept. 15, 2020 to apply for the grant, up to $10,000. Applications and eligibility documents will be available on the city website at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 1. Applicants may also contact the Mayor’s Office for documents or questions.

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