CARES Grants Now Open
Small businesses in need of emergency funding can now apply online for the Pinellas CARES Small Business Grant. This program provides one-time $5,000 grants to help offset the significant, temporary loss of revenue to these qualified businesses during this pandemic, and to assist businesses in retaining and paying employees.
The County has initially identified up to $35 million in emergency relief funds to support the small businesses hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. This program is limited to businesses with a commercial location in the County. Funds are available as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act federal stimulus package.
Regardless of whether a business is eligible for this program, it may still qualify for other existing funding programs. Visit the Pinellas County Economic Development website for a list of municipal, federal and state programs assisting businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Plus, Visit St. Pete/Clearwater's crisis hub and recovery hub have a host of resource links for industry, businesses and employees.
- $5,000 for qualifying small businesses with a physical location in Pinellas County (1-25 full-time employees, or equivalent part-time employees, including the owner).
- Restaurants, bars, short-term lodging and other non-essential businesses impacted by the local or state safer-at-home orders are eligible.
- Larger businesses, non-profits and home-based businesses are not eligible.
- Funds can only be used to reimburse the cost of business interruption caused by required closures provided those costs are not paid by insurance or by another federal program. Such costs may include employee wages, vendors, rent or other business expenses.
- No reimbursement is required.