COVID-19 Industry Update

October 28, 2020

After helping more than 11,800 individuals, families and businesses through direct financial assistance, Pinellas CARES programs will close to all new and recurring applications this Friday, Nov. 13.
Completed applications for both programs must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 13, to be considered for payment (see details below).
This deadline allows the county to meet federal guidelines requiring CARES funds to be distributed by Dec. 30, 2020. All CARES Act funds must be expended by this date unless Congress extends the deadline.

Details about these programs and all Pinellas County CARES programs can be found HERE.

Local Business Grants Overview:
Grants up to $10,000 for Pinellas-based businesses most affected by the pandemic: generally, those that were required to shut down or whose customers were required to shut down or stop doing business.

Qualifying business owners can use a single online application to be considered for one of the following grants:

  • Sliding Scale Grants: $2,500 to $10,000 grants for businesses making between $17,000 and $3 million in gross annual revenue.
  • Health & Safety Matching Grants: up to $10,000 to assist Target Industry businesses in implementing COVID-19-related upgrades and safety precautions.
  • Business Diversity and Arts Microgrants: help impacted business owners with barriers to participation in other grant programs strengthen their business through direct financial assistance and professional services, including help with post-COVID business planning, record-keeping and preparing documents needed to apply for other types of grant funding.

A detailed list of all business grant program qualifications and a link to the online application can be found HERE.
A completed application, including all required documents, must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m., Friday, Nov. 13, to be considered for a grant.

CARES funds can only be used to reimburse losses caused by COVID-19 that are not paid by insurance or by another federal grant or program. These costs may include employee wages, vendors, rent or other business expenses.
Businesses that have already applied for or received funding from local city grant programs may still be eligible for this program, and businesses that apply for this program may also apply for current or future local city grants.
Applicants are strongly encouraged to take their time to submit a full application, including all required documentation, for the quickest response. Applicants with questions about the Pinellas CARES Business Grants can visit, email [email protected] or phone (727) 453-7200 for assistance.

Financial Assistance for Individuals and Families:
Rent, mortgage and utility assistance up to $5,000 per household for overdue bills since March 1, 2020. Applicant will be asked to sign a form attesting to job or income loss from COVID-19, that they have no more than $10,000 in cash, checking or savings, and will need to send pictures of documents verifying U.S. and Pinellas County residency.
All above documents must be submitted via email to [email protected] no later than 11:59 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13, for consideration.
Due to the widespread impact of the pandemic on our local community, this program is experiencing a high volume of requests. Payments will take several weeks to arrive from the time documents are submitted for review.
Applicants who did not previously qualify for the program or who already received help, but need assistance for additional overdue bills, can apply again with a maximum of $5,000 per household.
Pinellas CARES Background
Pinellas CARES also supports several other countywide initiatives, including: grants for nonprofits and licensed child care providers, bolstering local pandemic response through increasing local capacity for testing, contact tracing, skilled nursing, personal protective equipment (PPE), community health educators, other public health measures, and workforce reemployment programs.
Information on all programs can be found HERE.

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