Applications open soon for Harris County's $30 million small business assistance program

Eligible businesses in Harris County may receive a grant of up to $25,000. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Eligible businesses in Harris County may receive a grant of up to $25,000. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Eligible businesses in Harris County may receive a grant of up to $25,000. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Harris County Commissioners Court voted unanimously June 30 to approve the Harris County Small Business Recovery Fund, a $30 million grant program designated for struggling small businesses that have not yet obtained financial assistance from other COVID-19 relief programs, according to a press release.

Through the program, eligible businesses may receive a grant of up to $25,000 to cover payroll costs, rent and accounts payable, among other operating expenses. Funding comes from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, officials said.

"The impact of this crisis on small businesses has been devastating. We can’t afford to lose a source of jobs, innovation and the enterprising spirit our region is known for," Judge Lina Hidalgo said in a statement. "These grants will help business owners stay afloat as Harris County continues to fight the COVID-19 crisis."

The program is set to launch July 13 and will remain open until July 22. It is designed for businesses with 30 or fewer employees, officials said.

Earlier in March, the county provided $10 million to about 400 small businesses through a separate small business relief program. The HCSBRF is part of an effort to assist a broader range of businesses struggling from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the release.

Officials said priority will be given to applicants that have not received prior assistance from other COVID-19 small business relief programs.

“The effects of COVID-19 on our friends and neighbors throughout Harris County are immense and widespread—on our health, our families, our medical community and our economy," Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle said in a statement. “Harris County’s response to this pandemic must recognize the need to address all these issues. With federal funding from the CARES Act, the Small Business Relief Fund is designed to help alleviate some of the stresses on small businesses throughout Harris County. I encourage those eligible to take advantage of this program.”
By Danica Lloyd

Editor, Cy-Fair

Danica joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in 2016. As editor, she continues to cover local government, education, health care, real estate, development, business and transportation in Cy-Fair. Her experience prior to CI includes studying at the Washington Journalism Center and interning at a startup incubator in D.C., serving as editor-in-chief of Union University's student magazine and online newspaper, reporting for The Jackson Sun and freelancing for other publications in Arkansas and Tennessee.