In an effort to support local businesses, Queen Anne’s County Economic & Tourism Development has created this resource page to respond to the impacts of COVID-19.  We understand that now, more than ever, our business community needs timely and relevant information.

Below you will find resources, information and tools sourced from federal, state and local resource partners.  It is important that business owners stay connected daily as new resources are being created and programs are evolving.

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Queen Anne’s County Grant Programs

Restaurant Recovery Relief Grant:

Funding for the Queen Anne’s County Restaurant Relief Grant Fund was provided by the State of Maryland Governor’s initiative. Queen Anne’s County  has been awarded an additional $266,109 in funds to specifically assist local restaurants during the Covid-19 pandemic

The program will be administered by the QAC Department of Economic and Tourism Development. It is projected that grants will be awarded in the range of $1,000-$10,000. Greater amounts may be awarded to restaurants with larger employee counts and demonstrated need.

The goal of the QAC Restaurant Relief Fund is to assist restaurants with expenses associated with adjusting their business model, new operating procedures and regulations associated with CED safety guidelines due to the pandemic

This grant is no longer accepting applications.

 

 

Upper Shore Micro Ag Grant:

Queen Anne’s County Economic and Tourism Development in partnership with the Upper Shore Regional Council is providing grant funding to help support local agricultural businesses looking to develop, expand, diversify, or improve their marketing efforts, as well as conduct agricultural research initiatives within Queen Anne’s County.

$28,000 in funding is available to applicants for Fiscal Year 2021. Grant requests ranging from $250 up to $5,000 will be considered on a competitive basis.

This grant is no longer accepting applications.

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COVID-19 Resources & Funding for Businesses

 

Maryland Business Express: This is the clearinghouse for all state and federal information related to COVID-19.

Maryland Business Relief Wizard: This tool helps connect businesses with the resources and programming for which they’re eligible, streamlining the process of finding support.

U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Assistance: An explanation all of the relief programs available through the SBA.

  • U.S. Small Business Administration – Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources
  • SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan: Loans are currently available to small business owners, including agricultural businesses, and nonprofit organizations. The EIDL program is designed to provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue due to COVID-19. Apply directly through the SBA.
  • Paycheck Protection Program (PPP):  A relief program designed to help businesses keep employees working during the COVID 19 pandemic. Contact your lending institution to verify participation in this program and to make application.  The program will be made available to sole proprietors beginning January 19, 2021.
  • SBA Express Bridge Loans:  Enables small businesses that currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 quickly. Contact an approved SBA lending institution. A list of lenders is provided on the website.
  • SBA Small Business Debt Relief Program:  The SBA is providing a financial reprieve during the COVID-19 pandemic to small businesses with existing SBA loans.  Contact your lender for more information.

LISC- Lowe’s Rural Relief Small Business Grants: LISC grants are available to small business owners in rural locations across the country. Rural communities are defined as having a population of 50,000 or less. Application period is currently closed. Sign up for email updates about the next round of funding.

TEDCO Rural and Underserved Business Recovery:  An economic relief initiative to benefit socially and economically disadvantaged and rural early-stage technology-based businesses. Applications will be available February 2021.

US Department of Agriculture (USDA) COVID-19 Resources

US Department of Agriculture Farm Loan Program: The Farm Service Agency offers loans to help farmers and ranchers get the financing they need to start, expand or maintain a family farm.

US Department of Agriculture-Federal Rural Resource Guide: USDA and its Federal partners have programs that can be used to provide immediate and long-term assistance to rural communities affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. These programs can support recovery efforts for rural residents, businesses and communities through: technical, training, and management assistance, financial assistance, state and local assistance.

Maryland Department of Agriculture-Maryland Farmer COVID-19 Relief Program: This program is not currently accepting applications.

CARES Act-Disaster Relief Funds for Fisheries and Related Business: The Maryland Department of Natural Resources announces economic relief funds for the commercial seafood industry. Application period has closed.

Maryland State Arts Council-Emergency Grant: Grants will provide funding to arts organizations and artists for losses sustained because of programming, operations, and events that have been modified or cancelled. Funding is available to County Arts Agencies, Arts & Entertainment District Management Entities, Arts Organizations, and Independent Artists. The program is not currently accepting applications.

Neighborhood Business Works (NBW) Program-Opportunity Zone Micro Grant: The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) through the Neighborhood Business Works (NBW) program is offering up to $500,000 of Opportunity Zone Micro grant ranging from $10,000 to $50,000 to early stage businesses and/or businesses that are expanding within an opportunity zone in Maryland. This program has CLOSED and will not be accepting applications at this time. If additional funding becomes available, the application may be reopened. 

Maryland Strong Economic Recovery Initiative: The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development is administering funding for the Governor’s Maryland Strong Economic Recovery Initiative (MD-SERI). These funds will support the state’s nonprofit tourism organizations, entertainment venues and Main Street Districts across Maryland​. Tourism application has closed. Entertainment venues and Main Streets may still apply.

BGE Energizing Small Business Grants: BGE is pledging $15 million to assist Maryland’s small businesses with COVID-19 relief and recovery. Eligible businesses located in BGE’s service area can apply for a $20,000 BGE Energizing Small Business Grant. This grant program is part of BGE’s comprehensive Customer Relief and Energy Infrastructure Investment Plan, designed to help the state’s economic recovery from the pandemic. The application opened January 20, 2021 and will be held in three rounds:

  • Round 1- January 20 to March 3, 2021
  • Round 2- May 5 to June 16, 2021
  • Round 3- September 1 to October 13, 2021·

Grants for Small Businesses Funded by Verizon: LISC will launch the grant application that small businesses can use to apply for a$10,000 grant. Grants will be eligible for small businesses across the U.S., particularly in historically underserved communities hit hard by the pandemic.  Eligible expenses for the grant include: paying rent and utilities, meeting payroll, paying outstanding debt to vendors, upgrading technology infrastructure, and other immediate operational costs. Application period has closed.

Citi Trends Grant: Black entrepreneurs with a confirmed selling history of their products in at least one of the following categories: Apparel, Beauty, Skin Care, Hair Care, Footwear, Home Décor, Bedding, Bath, Technology or Accessories are eligible. Ten grants of $5,000 each will be awarded. (double check and make sure your U.S. state is on their eligible list).   Application period has closed.

2021 New Voices + Barefoot #WeStanForHer Grants: Grants of $10,000 each to five entrepreneurs will be made to Black women-owned businesses. The grants program also includes complimentary business coaching and mentoring from New Voices Foundation for each grantee company.  Application period has closed.

Merchant Maverick Opportunity Grant: This grant is open to for-profit businesses that are majority-owned by a Black woman (cisgender or transgender) or a Black femme-identified individual.  The program will award four grants of  $10,000 each. Deadline to apply is May 1, 2021.

Bold.org-African American Entrepreneurs Grant-Female Award: This grant will be awarded to a female African-American entrepreneur at any education level who is currently building or who aspires to build a new business and is currently enrolled as a student.  One reward of $1,000 will be made (paid to the student’s college or university). Application period has closed.

Emma Johnson Single Mother Grant: Every month, Johnson gives out $500 cash to one single mom, no strings attached.  The 2021 Kickass Single Mom Stimulus Grant has one goal: Give a hand to single moms struggling with money, health, stress, child care, illness and loneliness. Qualifications are simple: 1. You’re a single mom. 2. You need the money right now.

Women who Tech: Open to North America-based, women-owned startups in tech that have already raised $50K in seed revenue or that are already generating revenue. The organization awards equity-free grants to women-led tech startups on a rolling basis throughout the year. For each grant period, there is a different theme. For the first grant period of 2021, the theme is Emerging Tech; applicants should be focused on emerging technologies to solve systemic global problems. The first place prize for the Women Who Tech Emerging Tech grant is $15,000, and the second-place awardee will receive $5,000. Application period has closed.

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Resources for Displaced Workers and Job Seekers

 

Maryland Department of Labor: General FAQs related to COVID 19 

Maryland Department of Labor: Unemployment Insurance: Resources to file UI claims and information about Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for self-employed and gig workers.

Upper Shore American Jobs Centers: Offering assistance for job seekers, including training and educational opportunities.

Maryland Workforce Exchange:  A free resource that links job seekers with prospective employers. Job Seekers can upload their resumes and apply online.

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Questions? 410-604-2100 or htinelli@qac.org