Jersey City will match all grants made to city businesses by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program, Mayor Steve Fulop announced Thursday.
The match will be between $1,000 and $5,000, depending on the size of the EDA grants. The program will be administered through the Jersey City Economic Development Corp., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.
Small businesses and nonprofits with a physical storefront are eligible.
The EDA program goes live at 9 a.m. Friday. Applications will be accepted through April 10. Grants are expected to be given out soon after.
“We’ve been working to stay ahead of the curve by anticipating our residents’ and business owners’ needs to survive this pandemic, not only from a health standpoint, but also economically, which could further devastate our community,” Fulop said in a statement.
“We decided to structure local programs that fully complement the state and federal program so that our local businesses can get a much-needed advantage. We are achieving that here with short-term grants up to $10,000 per business.”
The administration will use available Community Development Block Grant funds to match the state funding.
Council President Joyce Watterman said it is a way for the city to show its support for its small businesses.
“As a city, we believe in small businesses and their contribution to the economy, which is why providing a matching grant program is essential,” she said. “Small businesses are the backbone of our city, and are among those who need financial help the most right now. This financial boost will really help businesses get back on their feet.”
The JCEDC is already working with local community partners to highlight this opportunity for small businesses and nonprofits, which is the latest step toward providing financial relief to those who need it most during this crisis.
JCEDC Vice Chair Vivian Brady-Phillips said the grants the city matches will be used to help with payroll and to provide working capital with the goal of retaining employees.
“The business owner must certify as to the COVID-19-related need for financial support and be committed to retaining employees,” she said. “This is key for both businesses and the workers who also live in our community.”