State doles out nearly $1 million in COVID-19 aid to Main Street businesses

LANSING—Twenty-two communities around Michigan have been awarded a total of $993,984 in grants aimed at supporting the COVID-19 economic recovery efforts of small local businesses throughout the state, the Michigan Economic Development Corp. announced.

The grants are being awarded through an expansion of MEDC’s Match on Main program. A total of 299 small businesses around Michigan are receiving assistance through the program.

“Michigan’s small businesses and traditional downtowns are the heart of our communities, and by providing communities with resources to engage in economic recovery efforts we can help ensure our downtowns not only recover, but thrive,” said MEDC CEO Mark A. Burton. “The Match on Main grants will help Michigan’s downtown businesses recover from the loss of revenue as a result of the COVID-19 virus and support workers they employ in these communities.”

In May, MEDC announced that its existing Match on Main program was being expanded to provide access to more communities and refocusing resources on recovery efforts of existing businesses, rather than helping open new businesses. Community-based organizations such as downtown development authorities could apply for grant funding through Match on Main to then make local grants to small businesses located within their districts that have realized a significant financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Match on Main–COVID-19 Response program was opened up to all 286 engaged and certified Redevelopment Ready Communities across the state of Michigan, in addition to the Michigan Main Street communities that traditionally participate in the program. The expanded program also waived the matching requirement for the small business applicant which is required to receive funding under the traditional Match on Main program.

The local unit of government, downtown development authority, Main Street organization or other economic development organization that represents a traditional commercial district including a downtown, neighborhood commercial district, or an area planned and zoned for concentrated commercial development was eligible to apply for up to $50,000. The minimum contribution that was able to be administered to any one business must be at least $2,000, with a maximum of $10,000. Applicants determined which businesses were selected for inclusion in the application for support and at what desired grant amounts. The application window was May 13, 2020 through May 29, 2020.

A full list of businesses receiving support can be found at https://www.miplace.org/match-on-main/). The organizations receiving funding were: Main Street Calumet, nine businesses, $50,000; city of Marquette, 15 businesses, $50,000; city of Grayling, 12 businesses, $42,000; Traverse City Downtown Development Authority, 18 businesses, $50,000; Charlevoix Main Street DDA, 10 businesses, $50,000; Sault Ste. Marie DDA, 25 businesses, $50,000; Middle Michigan Development Corp.-City of Mt. Pleasant, 22 businesses, $48,000; Rogers City, nine businesses, $27,000; city of Zeeland, 10 businesses, $50,000; Lake Odessa DDA, eight businesses, $50,000; city of Big Rapids, seven businesses, $45,000; Bay Future-city of Bay City, 16 businesses, $50,000; Lapeer DDA, eight businesses, $41,000; St. Johns Principal Shopping District, 20 businesses, $50,000; village of Paw Paw, 12 businesses, $50,000; Ypsilanti DDA, 18 businesses, $45,000; Coldwater DDA, nine businesses, $35,000; Adrian DDA, 22 businesses, $49,984; Grandmont Rosedale Association, Detroit, 10 businesses, $50,000; Lake Orion DDA, six businesses, $15,000; Owosso Main Street, 23 businesses, $46,000; Downtown Lansing Inc., 10 businesses, $50,000.

On June 4, MEDC announced that more than 100 small businesses around Michigan were using its MI Local Biz crowdfunding program throughout the month of June. MEDC will provide a total of $500,000 in matching grants to help the businesses as they work to recover from the negative economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis. Visit https://www.patronicity.com/milocalbiz for a list of all the businesses running campaigns through the program, as well as a map showing the locations of them throughout the state.

MEDC has also partnered with Reopen Main Street to compile a variety of recovery resources into one easy-to-use website. The new website includes reopening strategies, ideas, hints and tips for businesses, business districts and organizations.

To learn more about MEDC’s COVID-19 response programs and the impact they are having on economic recovery efforts, visit michiganbusiness.org/covid19response. Other resources for economic reopening efforts as well as businesses across Michigan struggling with economic losses as a result of the COVID-19 virus can be found online at michiganbusiness.org/covid19. The MEDC has also developed a FAQ for Michigan businesses and communities at michiganbusiness.org/covid19-faq.

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