Newark Mayor Ras Baraka announced Monday that 110 Newark-based businesses were recipients of grants totaling $2.2 million from Round Three of the Small Business Grant Fund, the mayor’s emergency initiative to help stabilize the city’s small businesses.
The businesses selected could have from one to 25 employees and included home-based businesses. They were awarded grants of up to $25,000.
Applications were scored to prioritize personal services (barbershops, hair salons, nail salons), businesses that employ Newark residents, minority- and women-owned businesses and those that did not receive funding in the earlier round of city grants.
The program was available citywide, with a major share of the funds reserved for the hardest hit ZIP codes (07104, 07105 and 07107). Only businesses that complied with the 10-day shutdown from Nov. 25-Dec. 4 were eligible.
The fund was created in March 2020 to support impacted Newark small businesses and help them to survive the current crisis, retain as many employees as possible, and adapt and recover.
“With limited funds, we are working to help Newark businesses, tenants, artists and others facing financial ruin from COVID-19 to survive and recover,” Baraka said. “The Small Business Emergency Fund is one of the many ways that we are pulling together as a community to fight the virus and restore our economy.
“In collaboration with President (Joe) Biden, our federal, state and city legislators and our philanthropic community, we are working to expand the help that we can provide to Newark’s small businesses.”
Allison Ladd, a deputy mayor and director of economic and housing development, said 62% of the 110 businesses receiving grants went to businesses in the hardest-hit ZIP codes. She said 31% of the awards went to food/beverage businesses, 25% to salon/barber/personal services businesses, 14% to retail businesses and the remainder to a variety of other categories.
Grant awards cover accounts payable, payroll, inventory, licensing and license renewal, utilities, accounting and auditing services, rent, insurance, COVID-related equipment and supplies for adaptation and recovery.
The program is administered by the city’s Department of Economic and Housing Development and funded by local trust funds and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant funds. This round was developed with support from Bloomberg Associates.