On January 11, 2021, the Grover Beach City Council approved the allocation of $150,000 in assistance for local businesses continuing to grapple with the economic impacts of COVID-19 restrictions. This funding will support a fourth round of City-funded microgrants as well as a one-time “buy local” gift card program to encourage customer spending at local businesses in continued partnership with the South County Chambers of Commerce (“Chamber”).
In December, the Council approved a funding commitment of $500,000 to support local businesses and provided $350,000 in microgrants of up to $7,500 to 49 local businesses who applied for this program to help pay for rent, payroll and operating assistance during the holiday season. The $150,000 in remaining funds will be split equally between a fourth round of microgrants ($75,000) and a new “buy local” gift card program ($75,000).
Online applications for microgrants of up to $5,000 are open now through 5 PM on Tuesday, January 19, 2021. Businesses which operate in industries most impacted by the State’s Regional Stay Home Order and have not previously received microgrants from the City will be eligible for this fourth round of microgrants. Following review of applications by a City and Chamber review panel, checks will be distributed to recipients by late January.
The “buy local” program will provide gift cards to customers who spend at participating small local businesses in Grover Beach similar to a program started in San Luis Obispo. The City and Chamber will finalize this program for implementation in February with additional information to be shared at that time. “The City and the Chamber have taken rapid action to provide immediate assistance to Grover Beach businesses throughout this pandemic,” said Grover Beach Mayor Jeff Lee. “This funding provides life support for businesses struggling to keep their doors open in the face of unprecedented challenges brought about by the public health crisis. Our local businesses are a critical component of our community, and Grover Beach continues to prioritize their success.”
With this additional $150,000 allocation, the City of Grover Beach will have allocated a total of $750,000 for local business support since July 2020 in funding from the City’s General Fund, CARES Act, and SB 1090 Diablo Canyon closure settlement. The City has already distributed approximately $600,000 in microgrants to 70 local businesses including restaurants, retailers, manufacturers, and numerous other businesses.