Milwaukee County awarded $11.6 million in grants to 1,534 small businesses in Milwaukee County, the office of the Milwaukee County Executive announced today.
Grant funding will be used to cover personal protective equipment, restocking inventory, physical space modifications to follow COVID-19 guidelines, rent or mortgage payments, payroll and utilities.
A total of 2,100 applications were submitted, Milwaukee County executive David Crowley said in a statement.
“Recognizing the urgency of the financial challenges businesses are facing, the Milwaukee County Board has been working closely with county executive Crowley to provide relief as quickly as possible,” Milwaukee County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson said in a statement. “Our businesses are being asked to function under dire circumstances, and it is a priority for Milwaukee County to alleviate that burden as much as we can with the resources we have available.”
Priority for the grants was given to businesses with a letter of support from a member of the Ethnic and Divirse Chamber Coalition, a group of chambers of commerce supporting entrepreneurs of color, women, LGBT and veteran-owned businesses and other enterprises in historically underserved places without access to flexible, affordable capital, according to a press release.
“Our pursuit of racial equity will not be put on pause for the pandemic,” Crowley said in a statement. “It is crucial to invest in our marginalized communities now to secure a path forward and opportunity for continued economic growth long after the COVID-19 pandemic subsides.”