Last week, the University Place City Council voted unanimously to accept $992,700 from the State of Washington as part of the federal CARES Act. The funds will be redistributed into the community to assist with COVID-19 recovery efforts.
Based on recommendations from staff, $500,000 will be used to create grants (not loans) to U.P. businesses that have suffered significant economic losses as a result of the state-mandated shutdown that began in mid-March. The business grants will be divided into two tiers. Tier One provides a grant pool of $400,000 to support businesses that paid a minimum of $10,000 in sales tax in 2019 and operate from a storefront, while Tier Two will provide a pool of $100,000 for grants to smaller businesses, including home-based businesses.
All applicants, regardless of tier level, must meet minimum qualifying criteria. For details and to apply, visit the Business Relief Program page. The first round of applications must be received by July 22, with the goal of beginning the distribution of funds by July 31, 2020.
Of the remaining $492,700 in CARES funds, $100,000 will be directed to local human service providers. The City will contract with a local nonprofit agency to properly vet and distribute these funds to qualified residents of U.P. who can demonstrate a substantial loss of income due to COVID-19. Grants of up to $3,000 per household can be used to assist with rent, utilities (up to $1,000) or childcare.
The balance of the CARES funds ($392,700) will be used to reimburse City taxpayers for expenses incurred by their City government associated with its COVID-19 responses, including personal protective equipment for staff and the public, additional janitorial expenses and supplies, and a portion of salaries associated with individuals tasked with COVID-19 response efforts, including public safety personnel.