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City looking at grants for small businesses impacted by COVID-19

April 28, 2020–5:10 a.m.


The City of Rome is moving forward with plans for grant funding to assist local small businesses who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rome is getting just over $258,000 in Community Development Block Grant funding as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act passed by Congress and signed by the president in late March.

During Monday’s Rome City Commission meeting, Commissioner Mark Cochran spoke about the types of businesses that could apply.

“The amount of money that someone could make in a year for the gross products for that small business needs to be under $2 million,” he said.  “The employee number is still being worked out although restaurants will have an allowable employee number that is a little bit higher than other small businesses.  However, it really focuses on, and I believe Commissioner Stevenson probably had the best example, like a one-person hair salon……Anybody like that who really needs help right now.”

Specific details are still being worked out, but Cochran anticipates the grants to be awarded based on some type of points system.

There will be time for public review and a hearing before anything official is adopted.

The plan is to work out all the details before the US Department of Housing and Urban Development releases the funds so the grants will be ready to go soon thereafter.