Lowell COVID Small Business Emergency Relief Fund Supporting Manufacturing Jobs Grant Program

The City of Lowell has established the “Supporting Manufacturing Jobs” Grant Program to support qualified and eligible Lowell manufacturers that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Online Application


Overview

  • This grant program is funded through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant program- Cares Act (CDBG-CV) 
  • Grants up to $30,000 each 
  • Grant funds can be used to reimburse for working capital expenses, including but not limited to: rent or mortgage payments; payroll expenses; utility expenses; or other business related expenses incurred in 2021.
  • The grant will be forgiven once the City is able to confirm that the applicant has met all of the HUD CDBG-CV requirements.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Independently – owned manufacturers who are considered a “small business” per SBA standards* 
  • Located in Lowell
  • The business must have been operating in Lowell for at least 3 years (since 2018)
  • The business has ten (10) or more full time employees or full-time equivalents** besides the owner.
  • Demonstrate a 25% loss in revenue for 2021, or 2020 (as compared with 2019) 
  • Retain at least two (2) full-time or full-time equivalent employees** on payroll (excluding owner) 
  • Business has at least two (2) years remaining on business lease or proof of commercial real estate ownership

*Per SBA standards- Visit SBA’s website for your industry size standards

**Full-time Equivalent Jobs: 40 hrs. per week. (e.g. a part-time job of 20 hrs. / Week equals ½ or 0.5 full-time equivalent job). If less than 40 hrs./ week fill-out 2nd and/ or 3rd job to be created until total hours = 40hrs/week**

HUD Community Development Block Grant - CARES Act (CDBG-CV) Requirements

Applicants must comply with the requirements of the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant program.

Applicants must meet the HUD National Objective as a “Low/Moderate Income (LMI) Job Creation/Retention” project.

Job Creation or Retention

Applicants must commit to creating or retaining at least two (2) full-time jobs or full time equivalents** (FTE) The job must be filled by a Lowell resident who meets the household average median income requirement. Total household income for the individual must be at or below 80% of the average median income to qualify (see income limits table below).

Rehiring at least two position recently laid off due to COVID-19 related impacts or retaining a furloughed employee who meets income eligibility standards and is a Lowell resident would allow an applicant to meet the aforementioned requirements.

Businesses Not Eligible

  • Do not meet the aforementioned job creation/retention or other aforementioned business requirements ( type, size, location)
  • Non-manufacturing type of businesses as well as cannabis businesses are ineligible to receive this grant
  • Non-profit or faith-based organizations
  • Businesses with past-due tax liabilities, tax lien that existed prior to COVID-19 or who have filed for bankruptcy
  • Does not have a valid/current business registration with the City/State

Eligible Uses of Funds

Funds can be used for working capital expenses, including but not limited to rent or mortgage payments, utility, payroll expenses and business related fees.

Ineligible Uses of Funds

Funds cannot be used to purchase equipment, fixtures or physical expansion of the facility.

Application Deadline

Applications accepted on a rolling-basis but no later than May, 31st 2022.

Additional Considerations

Minority-owned small businesses will be given preference as well as small businesses that haven’t applied or secured supportive funding through local, state, and federal programs.  Please note, that even if a business meets the aforementioned criteria it is not guaranteed to receive a grant due to funding constraints of this program. The City reserves the right to discontinue or modify requirements and funding as necessary.

Notification

Successful applicants will receive a notice of award from the City of Lowell by email along with instructions on the next steps.  Unsuccessful applicants will also be notified by email.

Disbursement of Funds

While the maximum grant award amount is $30,000, the award amount is subject to proof of verifiable need. For example, if an applicant can only document one monthly commercial rent payment, then the award will equal the size of the commercial rent payment.

The City of Lowell will require additional financial information to prevent duplication of services. Additional information may include, but is not limited to, SAMS #, DUNS#, and documentation of other financial support received from local, state, and federal entities (Duplication of Benefits form).


Table 1 - CDBG-CV Income Guidelines (Individual only-not family or household, effective July 01, 2020)

#1 (0%-30%)
#2 (31%-50%)
#3 (51%-80%)
#4 (81% and above)
$0-$22,700
$22,701-$37,800
$37,801-$54,950
$54,951+


Online Application