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The Application Period has Closed as of July 14, 2020 5:00 pm

The application process for the Greater Easthampton Sustaining Small Business Grant (SSBG) program closed on July 14, and we are delighted to announce that all 31 qualified applicants will receive funding in the form of up to $1,500 individual grants, for a total of $43,132.

The recipients are all small businesses in the Greater Easthampton area. These businesses will be using the funds to pay rent, utilities, and phone charges, and to purchase Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and other equipment and supplies that will allow them to continue to operate their businesses according to state-required health and safety standards.

We at The Chamber want to thank the members of our Review Committee, three local business owners who worked hard to review all applications and supporting documentation to verify the eligibility of the applicants: Gen Brough, President, Finck & Perras Insurance Agency; Sandra Costello, Owner and Chief Hugger, Sandra Costello Photography; and Landon Jenkins, Manager, Old Colony Package Store.

The SSBG program is part of a larger collaboration between The Chamber of Greater Easthampton and the City of Easthampton, within the Blueprint Easthampton initiative. The initial intent of the SSBG is to provide our local small and micro businesses and our nonprofit community, short-term, immediate financial aid to those who have sustained economic loss due to the COVID–19 pandemic, so that businesses may continue their operations.

A $30,000 grant was awarded to the City of Easthampton by the Office of Attorney General Maura Healy toward this effort, and Mayor LaChapelle invited The Chamber of Greater Easthampton to be the program administrator. The grant was also seeded in conjunction with gifts totaling $10,000 from Todd Barron and Lindsay Barron LaBonte, co-managers of Applied Mortgage, a dba of HarborOne Mortgage; from HarborOne Mortgage; and from HarborOne Bank. And finally, a generous additional donation was made by Suite3 of Easthampton, which allowed the total number of qualified applicants to receive their requested grants. We send our warmest thanks to all of these donors for making this program possible.

The grant program was open to all businesses in the Greater Easthampton area (Easthampton, Southampton and Westhampton), not only to Chamber Members.

It is our hope that other members of the business community will desire to come forward with donations to continue funding this grant program in the future. If you are interested in doing so, or if you have further questions, please contact Moe Belliveau, Chamber Executive Director, at 413-527-9414 or email her at [email protected].

 

Blueprint Easthampton | Sustaining Small Business Grant Program

Program Requirements

The Sustaining Small Business Grant (SSBG) Program is part of a larger collaboration between The Chamber of Greater Easthampton and the City of Easthampton, within the Blueprint Easthampton initiative. The initial intent of the SSBG is to provide our local small and micro businesses, as well as our nonprofit community, short-term, immediate financial aid to those who have sustained economic loss due to the COVID–19 pandemic, so that businesses may continue their operations.

A $30,000 grant has been awarded to the City of Easthampton by the Office of Attorney General Maura Healy toward this effort. Understanding the importance of this opportunity, the City has reached out to The Chamber to partner as the program administrator to create and run the SSBG program, while the City acts as the financial coordinator, collecting donations and writing checks once the grants are awarded by the Chamber to businesses located in Easthampton.

The grant has also been seeded with $10,000 in additional gifts. The Vitality Grant, sponsored by Applied Mortgage Giving, is funded by a $7,500 gift from Todd Barron and Lindsay Barron LaBonte, co-managers of Applied Mortgage, a dba of HarborOne Mortgage, based on their desire to invest in their communities by supporting Greater Easthampton area small businesses and nonprofits. Also, an additional grant of $2,500 has been provided by HarborOne Mortgage and HarborOne Bank.

We know that the need is high and expect that these grant funds will be exhausted quickly. We invite our local business community who would like to extend such assistance to their fellow businesses in need to contact The Chamber for assistance on how to do so.

The Application process will open on July 1, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. and end on July 14, 2020, at 5:01 p.m.

You qualify if you meet all four of the following criteria:

  1. Your business is based within the Greater Easthampton area (Easthampton, Southampton and Westhampton only).
  2. Your business is locally owned, independent, and responsible for all revenues and expenses.
  3. Your business has been affected directly because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  4. You have a valid Business Certificate or Business Permit, or are registered with the Secretary of State.

You do not qualify if you meet either one of the following criteria:

  1. Your business grows and/or sells cannabis or related products.
  2. You are not located within the Greater Easthampton area (Easthampton, Southampton and Westhampton only).

Required documentation:

To allow us to verify your request, you must provide the following:

  • A copy of any one of the following: Up to date Business Certificate, Business Permit, or Secretary of State’s Corporation listing (all applicants).
  • Completion of an application form, indicating the dollar amount you need for expenses in one or more of the following categories and providing the substantiating documents specified by the July 14 deadline:
  • Personal Protective Equipment (copy of price quote)
  • Rent (copy of lease)
  • Utilities (electric, gas, water, refuse: copy of bill)
  • Telephone (copy of bill)

Items needed to meet Mandatory Health and Safety Standards related to COVID–19, e.g.:

  • Plexiglass at checkout counters
  • Outdoor seating
  • Sanitation supplies

Note: Participation in this grant may or may not affect your eligibility to participate in the Paycheck Protection Loan Program via the Small Business Administration (SBA) relief under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES), or other forms of federal or state aid. Please check the SBA here.

 Privacy Information: Information provided in this application may be considered public record and may be subject to public disclosure.

Application Process:

Applications will be accepted during a 14-calendar-day period, July 1 through July 14.

Applicants may apply online and by email, or may download a paper application to send in by U.S. Mail, no later than July 14, 2020, at 5:00 p.m.

  • If applying online, go to the Chamber website beginning July 1 to complete the application, and email the substantiating documents to [email protected]nchamber.org.
  • If using a paper application, send application and substantiating documents by U.S. Mail to The Chamber of Greater Easthampton, 33 Union St., Easthampton, MA 01027 (Please do not hand-deliver to Chamber Office, as the office will be closed.) Or, scan and email applicable documents to [email protected].

Applications will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis, upon the program’s receipt of all required application materials. Award amounts are based on individual requests up to $1,500.

Grants will be awarded until approved funding is exhausted or the grant program is ended, whichever comes first. Applications will be accepted during the 14-day open period only. Continued funding of this program is not guaranteed.

Program Limitations:

The Blueprint Easthampton Sustaining Small Business Grant Program is not intended to and shall not be construed to confer any right, interest, or entitlement to any person or business entity. Any or all grants under this program may be suspended, revoked, or cancelled at any time.

Applications for grants will be uniformly considered based on compliance with eligibility criteria and on a first-come, first-served basis only. Receipt will be determined based on date of receipt of a complete application package.

Due to limited funding, no person or business entity will be allowed overlapping awards or more than one award, and the amount of an approved award may be less than that requested by the applicant.

The Blueprint Easthampton Sustaining Small Business Grant Program reserves the right to decline any application for any non-discriminatory reason.

Following the award, if any one or more of the criteria is not met, or it is discovered that an application contains materially false or misleading information, then as a condition of an award and of this program, the applicant shall immediately refund all grant payments previously made and all costs incurred by the program, including reasonable attorney’s fees.

By submitting an application or by accepting an award, it is an express condition that the applicant and recipient indemnify, defend, release and hold harmless the City of Easthampton, the Greater Easthampton of Chamber of Commerce LLC, and the Blueprint Easthampton Sustaining Small Business Grant Program, its members, officials, employees, and representatives from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, and expenses (including reasonable attorney fees) directly or indirectly arising from or in connection with any act, omission or conduct of the City of Easthampton, the Greater Easthampton Chamber of Commerce LLC, or the Blueprint Easthampton Sustaining Small Business Grant Program.

Link to online application: The application period has closed.

 

Questions about this program may be directed to Moe Belliveau, Chamber Executive Director, at 413-527-9414.