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Santa Barbara County launching Emergency Business Assistance Grants

Santa Barbara County launching Emergency Business Assistance Grants

  • Updated

An Emergency Business Assistance Grant Program is being launched by Santa Barbara County in partnership with the Santa Barbara Foundation to provide grants to microenterprise and small businesses struggling with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible microenterprise businesses may apply for up to $10,000 in funding, while eligible small businesses may apply for up to $25,000.

Guidelines were released May 3, and businesses can apply for the grants from May 10 through June 30 or until all the funds have been expended, a county spokesman said.

If interest persists and funds are still available, the application period may be extended, the spokesman said.

“This opportunity is made possible through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development … ,” said George Chapjian, director of the County Community Services Department. “The goal is to implement Community Development Block Grant programs that reduce the impacts of the pandemic.”

The funding, allocated by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security, or CARES, Act, was provided to the county specifically for preventing, preparing for and responding to COVID-19 impacts.

As a result, Emergency Business Assistance Program funding will only be provided when adverse COVID-19 impacts to an applicant’s business are reasonably determined and documented.

“This grant program is an added effort to provide support for our county’s economy through continued uncertain times,” said Jessica Sanchez, director of donor relations at the Santa Barbara Foundation. “This program is another COVID-19 relief partnership, like Santa Barbara Better Together Fund and Elaine F. Stepanek Foundation Restaurant Fund that are providing extra relief to businesses challenged by the coronavirus pandemic.”

To apply for a grant, small-business owners should review the grant guidelines and eligibility requirements, then complete the eligibility checklist before accessing the grant portal and registering a business to receive access to the application.

Staff from the county and Santa Barbara Foundation will host a workshop to discuss the program with interested business owners from noon to 1:30 p.m. May 19. 

Applications will be time and date stamped and reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Applicants may be required to submit additional documentation or details and will have two weeks to submit the additional materials, as requested by the Santa Barbara Foundation.

Applications will not be accepted by email or fax, the spokesman said.

They can be submitted electronically via the Santa Barbara Foundation’s grant portal or printed and mailed in a sealed envelope to the Santa Barbara Foundation, 1111 Chapala St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101.

Applications also can be hand-delivered in a sealed envelope to the above address between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For more information, contact the Santa Barbara Foundation at 805-963-1873.

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