With more than 300,000 applications successfully completed, application approval notifications will be sent out Friday, January 15 through Friday, January 22. Funds will be disbursed over a 45-day verification period beginning Friday, January 22.
A second round of applications will open at 8:00 a.m. February 2 and will run through 6:00 p.m. February 8. Applicants who submitted all necessary documents in the first round and met eligibility requirements, but did not receive a grant, do not need to reapply; their applications will be rolled over for consideration in the second round.
“There is no question that small business are hurting, and the reality of this pandemic demands urgent relief now to help those who need it most,” said Dee Dee Myers, GO-Biz Director. “Before COVID-19, the 4.1 million small businesses that call this state home created two-thirds of California’s net new jobs and employed nearly half of all private-sector employees. It is crucial that we do everything we can to put more money into the hands of impacted small business owners.”
On January 5, Governor Newsom previewed his Equitable Recovery for California’s Businesses and Jobs plan – part of his proposed 2021-22 state budget – which called for immediate legislative action on $575 million in additional grants for the California Relief Grant Program. This investment will add to the initial $500 million allocation announced November 30, bringing the total amount for the Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program to $1.075 billion.
The Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program offers grants up to $25,000 to micro and small businesses and nonprofits that have been impacted by the pandemic. It is not a first-come, first-served program, nor a rolling approval process. Grants will be distributed across the state, with priority given to regions and industries impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, disadvantaged communities and underserved small business groups. All applications will be considered and prioritized based on impact.
Due to the overwhelming demand, the Round 1 application deadline was extended from January 8 to January 13 to ensure interested small businesses and nonprofits had the opportunity to apply.
Mission-based lenders and small business advisory and technical assistance providers will continue to help small businesses with the application process in multiple languages and formats in the second round. Many of the State-supported small business centers, which prioritize the expansion of technical assistance to underserved business groups, will also be also available to help. For more information on grant requirements and eligibility, please visit CAReliefGrant.com.
The program, which officially opened December 30, experienced high traffic – receiving thousands of completed applications. However, due to the high traffic, some businesses may have had trouble accessing the application. Adjustments to the program’s website have been made and the application period has been extended to ensure that all interested applicants have the opportunity to apply. The Round 1 application deadline has been extended from January 8 to January 13, 2021 at 11:59 p.m.
The State’s selected intermediary, Lendistry, a Community Development Financial Institution, is working with other mission-based lenders and small business advisory and technical assistance providers to help small businesses with the application process in multiple languages and formats. Many of the State-supported small business centers, which prioritize the expansion of technical assistance to underserved business groups, are also available to help. For more information on grant requirements and eligibility, as well as to find a local partner, please visit careliefgrant.com.
The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) serves as the State of California’s leader for job growth and economic development efforts. GO-Biz offers a range of services to business owners including: attraction, retention and expansion services, site selection, permit streamlining, clearing of regulatory hurdles, small business assistance, international trade development, assistance with state government, and much more. For more information visit, www.business.ca.gov.
The Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA) helps support economic growth and innovation by working to ensure that California’s small businesses and entrepreneurs have the information, tools and resources they need to plan, launch, manage and grow their businesses successfully and be resilient. The CalOSBA serves to elevate their voices in state government and to advocate on their behalf to help ensure all aspiring and current small business owners and entrepreneurs are provided with the opportunity to access capital, access markets, and connect to the networks and resources they need to succeed. For more information visit the website.