Prince William County Economic Development staff is developing the application process for the county’s $1 million program to provide financial relief for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Executive Director Christina Winn said Friday that they are working on details of the program, such as requirements for applicants and the timeline for decisions. She is planning to present the program’s details to the Board of County Supervisors at a meeting May 19. 

The board dedicated funding to the program to offer grants and loans through its industrial development authority at its meeting April 28. It’s set to start during the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, and any funding will carry over to the next fiscal year. 

Supervisor Margarat Franklin, D-Woodbridge, proposed the idea April 21. At that time, she said eligible businesses must show 50% loss in revenue as a result of the pandemic, and the program would provide grants up to $10,000 for businesses with an annual revenue under $500,000, and low interest loans up to $30,000 for businesses with an annual revenue at $500,000 and above. Franklin also proposed prioritizing employee retention by small business owners. 

ARLINGTON TAKING APPLICATIONS

Arlington Economic Development began accepting applications Friday for its small business emergency grant program, said Cara O’Donnell, Arlington Economic Development’s public relations manager.

Arlington Economic Development is providing a total of $1.2 million for the program, with funding from the county, its industrial development authority and Rosslyn and Crystal City business improvement districts. 

The program is set to provide grants up to $10,000 to businesses and nonprofits with 50 or fewer employees so businesses can pay employee salary and benefits, capital and operating expenses directly related to the immediate impacts of the pandemic, according to the AED. 

Businesses and nonprofits must be in Arlington County, have fewer than 50 employees and can show a loss in revenue of 35% or more due to the pandemic. The deadline to apply is May 17. 

“A diverse panel will then evaluate the applications through a competitive process involving a weighted scoring system, looking at considerations like the number of jobs retained or supported with funds, length of time the business has operated in Arlington, how the funds will be used, and various other criteria,” according to the AED. “Grant award decisions are expected to be made in mid-June.”

LOUDOUN AWARDS $1.4M IN AID

Brian Tinsman, marketing and communications manager with Loudoun County’s Economic Development Authority, said the authority raised $1.4 million for its business interruption fund.  

Out of over 1,200 applications, 671 businesses met all requirements. The program required businesses and farms to have less than $2.5 million in gross annual receipts, show at least 25% loss in revenue due to the pandemic and be licensed and operational in the county.  

On Friday, Tinsman said the authority randomly selected what businesses received grants. 

For businesses that have 3 to 50 employees or 3 to 10 home-based employees, the authority awarded 145 businesses $7,500 grants for a total of more than $1 million, Tinsman said. For agriculture-based businesses, the authority awarded 50 businesses $5,000 grants for a total of $250,000. For businesses with 51 to 100 employees, the authority awarded six businesses $10,000 grants for a total of $60,000. 

“There is nothing more important than helping our community and the businesses they work for during the crisis,” Mark Madigan, the authority’s chairman, said in a news release.  

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors approved funding the program with $1.15 million and the economic development authority added an additional $250,000 to the program, Tinsman said.

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