Small businesses needing PPE for their employees and customers can not only get them at a discounted price through a state program starting Friday — they may soon be able to get a grant from the state to help pay for them.
The second phase of the PPE Access Program will make $20.4 million available to subsidize small and microbusinesses’ PPE purchases from designated vendors.
This phase of the program will allow businesses with 100 or fewer full-time equivalent employees to receive grants equal to 25% of the cost of purchases made through designated vendors. So, all eligible businesses can receive up to $400 in discounts. Businesses in one of the 715 census tracts that were eligible to be designated as Opportunity Zones can receive up to $500.
These grants will be applied in addition to the 10% discount offered to all businesses, meaning small businesses will be able to save more than a third of the cost of their PPE purchases.
The grants, which will come in the form of a coupon, will be on a first-come, first-served basis. EDA officials said they are hopeful that they will be available in the first half of November.
Small businesses and organizations interested in receiving the additional 25% discounts can sign up for alerts on their availability here.
The need for small businesses to have PPE took on an even greater urgency this week, when Gov. Phil Murphy signed an executive order mandating a number of safety issues, including having a supply of PPE for your workforce.