Tourism, travel and hospitality companies that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic may qualify for a new recovery program, which began accepting applications July 6.

The Texas Travel Industry Recovery Grant Program was established by Texas lawmakers during a special legislative session in 2021. Senate Bill 8 allocated $180 million from the federal American Rescue Plan, which will be used to support struggling businesses.

A one-time grant of up to $20,000 will be awarded to eligible businesses from the following industries: arts, entertainment and recreation; food services and drinking places; traveler accommodation; RV parks and recreational camps; traveler arrangement and reservation services; convention and trade show organizers; breweries; wineries; and distilleries.

Applications opened July 6, but businesses can apply in phases based on their North American Industry Classification System code. The application dates are:

  • Category 1: July 6 to July 31 for NAICS 312120, 312130, 312140, 5615, 561920 and 7212

  • Category 2: Aug. 1 to Aug. 21 for NAICS 71

  • Category 3: Aug. 22 to Sept. 11 for NAICS 7211

  • Category 4: Sept. 12 to Oct. 2 for NAICS 722

  • Category 5: If funds are still available, officials will award funds to some of the remaining applications.

Businesses will submit their Texas sales and use tax returns from 2019-21 as well as their most recent quarterly tax form, invoices or payroll records, and a veterans service or benefits letter.

Business owners can attend webinars hosted by the Texas Economic Development and Tourism Office for more information about the program and the application process. The first webinar is scheduled for July 12 from 1-2 p.m.