COVID-19 / Funding

Loudoun County launched a $1.4M relief fund for small businesses

Businesses in the Virginia county impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic can now apply for grants ranging from $5,000 to $10,000.

Buddy Rizer, director of the Loudoun County Department of Economic Development, in January 2020. (Photo via @LoudounBiz on Twitter)

In the latest example of a local government responding to the coronavirus pandemic with support for small businesses, last week, Virginia’s Loudoun County Board of Supervisors approved $1.15 million to launch the COVID-19 Business Interruption Fund. The Loudoun Economic Development Authority added an additional $250,000, raising the fund’s total to $1.4 million.

The grant funding will go to small businesses headquartered in the county that have been impacted by the pandemic and will be split into two categories: the general business fund and the agriculture-based business fund. The fund will allot $1.215 million to general businesses, and $185,000 will go toward agriculture-based businesses.

Applications open at noon on April 29 and will close at noon on May 2. Unlike other funding relief programs that operate on a first come, first served basis, applications for the COVID-19 Business Interruption Fund will be verified by county employees, then placed in a pool where businesses will randomly be selected to receive funding.

The general fund will provide $7,500 grants to 74 businesses with three to 50 employees, while 66 businesses with 51 to 100 employees will be selected to receive $10,000 grants. Besides being headquartered in Loudoun County, eligible companies must have at least three employees, have less than $2.5 million in gross annual income, and have experienced a 25% loss in revenue because of the global crisis. Home-based businesses in the county are eligible to apply.

There will be 37 grants amounting to $5,000 each awarded to agriculture-focuses businesses that are not eligible for the general fund. Agricultural businesses are defined as a rural business according to the Loudoun County Zoning code, have less than $2.5 million in gross annual income, and have zero to two employees, among a few other qualifications.

The creation of the COVID-19 Business Interruption Fund comes after Virginia launched the Fairfax County Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Fund earlier this month. Unlike the Loudoun County funding relief program, the Fairfax County fund issued loans that small businesses must eventually pay back.

Series: Coronavirus

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