Grants offered to Kent Co. business limited by new state order

Kent County

A sign announces a business is shut down due to social distancing measures aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus. (March 30, 2020)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Kent County is opening up grants to small businesses being affected by the most recent set of state restrictions linked to coronavirus.

Restaurants, bars, theaters, entertainment venues, group fitness classes, bowling alleys, ice skating rinks and other businesses can now get between $5,000 and $20,000 from the Kent County Small Business Recovery Program.

Those types of businesses were ordered by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to limit options or shut down entirely effective Wednesday and lasting for three weeks in an attempt to slow the spread of coronavirus amid a statewide surge.

Businesses with 50 or fewer full-time workers can apply online to get a county grant. The Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce will be reaching out to businesses that haven’t already gotten a grant.

“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a devastating impact on many small businesses,” Kent County Board of Commissioners Chair Mandy Bolter said in a statement. “Businesses forced to shut down or curtail operations around the holidays may not recover unless we act quickly to provide relief.”

The cash comes from a $5 million chunk of federal CARES Act money that went to the county. The county noted that because the amount of money is limited and is already running out, businesses should apply as quickly as possible.

The city of Grand Raids has a separate grant program that offers up to $5,000 to small businesses affected by the pandemic.

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