Grant funds available for county’s small businesses


SIDNEY – Applications will be accepted starting Monday for the Shelby County Small Business Relief Program, which is offering $100,000 in grants to small businesses in the county that were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible small businesses can apply for up to $5,000 in grant funds to be used for the reimbursement of eligible expenses. The program is being funded with money Shelby County received through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act – a $2 trillion economic stimulus bill that Congress passed in March.

To be eligible for grant funding, businesses must have 50 or fewer employees or 1099 workers as of March 22, 2020; must have less than $1 million in gross revenue/receipts on an annual basis; and must have experienced a decrease in gross revenue of 35 percent or more compared to March 1-April 30, 2019, revenue due to COVID-19.

To receive funding, businesses also must be for-profit entities in Shelby County that have been in operation since at least January 2019.

Ineligible businesses include adult entertainment establishments; banks, savings and loans or credit unions; e-commerce only companies; liquor/wine stores; vaping stores; tobacco stores; cannabis dispensaries; and franchised businesses that are not locally owned and independently operated.

Eligible expenses include mortgage costs; rent or lease costs; utility expenses; salaries, wages or compensation paid to employees or 1099 workers; materials and supplies related to interruption of the business caused by required closures; and personal protective equipment or other COVID-19 related costs.

Sole proprietors can use grant funding as income replacement by providing documentation on lost revenue so long as no unemployment benefits are being received or are expected to be received by the applicant.

Ineligible expenses include cost of vehicle or equipment leased or purchased after March 23, except if the purchase of equipment is to comply with Responsible RestartOhio; personal, non-business expenses of businesses or their owners; construction costs; and any tax, license or fee obligations payable to any governmental entity.

Applications will be accepted from 9 a.m. July 27 through 5 p.m. Aug. 10. Applications can be submitted via email to [email protected] or dropped off at the Shelby County Annex during regular office hours.

If more than $100,000 in grant funding is requested by Shelby County businesses, a lottery system would be utilized to select grant recipients.

For complete details about the Shelby County Small Business Relief Program or to receive an application, visit

By Kyle Shaner

[email protected]

Reach the writer at [email protected] or 937-538-4824.

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