Okaloosa County, in partnership with the Florida SBDC at UWF, has funded a Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Grant Program. Okaloosa County will fund the grant with a contribution of $113,000. The City of Fort Walton Beach will also contribute $100,000 for small businesses located within the city limits. The individual grant amount is $2,500. Each applicant OR business can only receive one grant.
The Florida SBDC at UWF will process complete application packets for eligible for-profit businesses; a third-party review board will review applications for approval; and UWF will distribute the appropriate funds to businesses who have been awarded the grant.
The COVID-19 Grant is intended to assist for-profit businesses located in Okaloosa County, by addressing their immediate cash flow needs as a result of demonstrated economic injury due to COVID-19.
Businesses are encouraged to read all eligibility requirements for the program and ensure required supporting documents are submitted with the application. The window for submission of applications will open on May 26 at 8:00am CDT, and will be closed on May 29 at 5:00pm CDT.
Applications are available for download beginning May 20, but PLEASE NOTE applications sent in before May 26 at 8:00am CDT will not be reviewed.
Eligibility requirements, supporting documents needed, and the application can be found at (myokaloosa.com/covid-grant).
“Okaloosa county is proud to support our local businesses, which are the backbone of our local economy and make our home a place others want to visit and live,” said Chairman Trey Goodwin, “We are excited to get back on track and look forward to helping local businesses get back up and running.”
In order to quality you must be:
- A for-profit, privately-held small business that maintains a storefront location in Okaloosa County and/or the City of Fort Walton Beach.
- Your business must have been established and active in Okaloosa County prior to 1/1/2019.
- Your business must have been profitable in 2019 as indicated in tax returns or financial documents.
- The business must have a demonstrated reduction in sales revenues of 25% or more due to the loss of business income related to COVID-19. Applicant must provide written justification and documented evidence of economic loss or injury caused by the declared disaster, e.g. sales reports or income statements from a previous year compared to the current period.
- The business must be a small business with no more than 20 employees. Number of employees will be verified using employer documentation (Form W-3, Form 941 or 1099s). Please note, if submitting Form 1099s, we will only accept 1099s written out to individual employees, not other businesses.
- The business must not have received funding from another grant program available to small businesses in the Panhandle.
Businesses approved can expect grants to be awarded in June 2020.
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