According to information available at MGCC: the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has made $50.8 million in grants available to support small businesses, microenterprises, and their employees, families and communities. Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) will be administering these funds to businesses experiencing economic hardship and a loss of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Grant funding is intended to help businesses adversely impacted by the pandemic. Preference will be given to small businesses whose owners are women, minorities, veterans, members of other underrepresented groups, who are focused on serving the Gateway Cities of Massachusetts, and those most negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Preference will also be given to applicants that have not been able to receive aid from other federal programs related to COVID-19.
Timeline: Application will be open for 3 weeks. Application opened on 10/22/2020 at 12:00 PM and closes on 11/12/2020 at 12:00 PM.
The program offers two types of grants:
1) one for businesses with 50 or fewer employees. For this grant, businesses can receive up to $75,000 but capped at up to 3 months of operating expenses, as evidenced by your business’ 2019 Federal Tax Returns. Grant amounts will be considered for actual expenses for 2020 during the pandemic. The funds can be used for employee payroll and benefit costs, mortgage interest, rent, utilities and interest on other debt obligations.
2) The second grant is for businesses with less than 5 employees. For this grant of up to $25k, the funds may be used for working capital to cover business costs, such as rent, staffing, utilities, and technical assistance, general support and stabilization of the business. Funds may also be used for purchasing personal protection equipment (PPE). To qualify for this specific grant:
- Business has 5 or fewer employees (1 or more of whom owns the business)
- Business must provide goods or services to multiple clients or customers
- The owner(s) of the business must qualify under the Low-Moderate Income (LMI) Limited Clientele national objective criteria. They must earn an annual income equal to or less than 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) based on family size (which rules out most healthcare professionals).
For both grants, non-approved uses of funds include:
Major equipment purchases, purchase of real property, construction activities, business expansion, lobbying. Also, grantees must prevent the duplication of benefits, which means these grant funds may not be used to pay expenses if another source of financial aid has paid that same expense.
Below is a list of the additional requirements for both grant programs:
- Business must have a physical establishment in Massachusetts
- Business must be a for-profit entity (sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation or LLC)
- Business must be able to document a loss of income equal to or greater than requested assistance due to COVID-19
- Business must be currently in operation or if not in operation must have an intent to reopen.
- Business must have been established prior to 06/30/2019.
- Business must be in good standing with the state and city/town:
- Business must be current on all taxes due through 3/1/2020; and
- Have active and valid state licenses/registrations, if applicable; and
- Not a party to litigation involving the Commonwealth or municipality you operate in.
- Ineligible businesses:
- Real estate rentals/sales businesses;
- Businesses owned by persons under age 18;
- Businesses that are chains;
- Liquor stores;
- Weapons/firearms dealers;
- Lobbyists; or
- Cannabis-related businesses.
Where To Apply:
Apply for the Small Business Grant for 50 or Fewer Employees at: https://massgcc3.submittable.com/submit/177585/small-business-grants-for-50-or-fewer-employees
Or apply for the Small Business Grant for 5 or Fewer Employees at: https://massgcc2.submittable.com/submit/177584/small-business-grants-for-5-or-fewer-employees
Required documentation for both programs include:
- A copy of your filed 2019 Federal Business Tax Return, including all required schedules.
- A copy of filed 2019 Federal Personal Tax Returns for each business owner, including all required schedules.
- A copy of your License to Operate/Business License/Professional Certification, if applicable
- Completed and signed IRS W-9 Form (https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw9.pdf)
- If your business is a LLC, Partnership or Corporation: A copy of your Certificate of Good Standing from the Secretary of State, not from the Department of Revenue (A Certificate of Good Standing from the Department of Revenue is not required.) All entities organized in other states that operate in Massachusetts must be registered and in good standing in Massachusetts. If you need to request a Certificate of Good Standing, click here: https://corp.sec.state.ma.us/CorpWeb/Certificates/CertificateOrderForm.aspx.
- If your business is a Sole Proprietorship: A copy of your Business Certificate (DBA) from your city/town
And the Small Business Grant for 5 or Fewer Employees requires this additional documentation:
- DUNS Number (You can look up your DUNS Number by following the link. If you do not yet have one, you can put in a free, expedited request for a number (24-hour turnaround) by specifying that you are applying for a government grant. Use the Self-Service Portal link: dnb.com/govtduns and choose “Federal Government Contractors or Grantees DUNS Number Support”.)
- A copy of your Business Lease or Mortgage Bill
- A copy of the invoice(s) for expenses you wish to use these grant funds to cover. If it is for a future expense, please describe in detail what that expense will be (in 1-2 sentences) and expect to submit proof that the expense was paid within 45 days of receiving your grant award.
- Optional – 2020 Income Verification Supporting Documentation. Applicants may submit historical documentation to support the projected revenues and expenses with their applications, such as: quarterly tax statements, income statements, sales reports, cash flow statements, and accounts receivable reports as supporting documentation. While not a requirement upon application submission, please note that applicants must provide such documentation if requested by Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development, or the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development at a later date.