Edmond Chamber providing grants to local businessesPublished: Wednesday, April 1, 2020 By: Janice Francis-Smith Source: The Journal Record
On Wednesday morning, Edmond businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic may apply for grants of up to $5,000 made available by the Edmond Area Chamber of Commerce and the Edmond Economic Development Authority.
The Edmond Small Business Emergency Microgrant Program is available to for-profit businesses registered with the Oklahoma secretary of state that are located within the city limits of Edmond and are members of the Edmond Chamber of Commerce.
“We’re just really excited to be able to provide this opportunity to our Edmond Chamber members and to our businesses that are located in Edmond to help them weather the storm,” said Edmond Chamber President and CEO Sherry Jordan. “It’s meant to be kind of an in-between to help them get through the crisis until they can get back on their feet and hopefully secure some financing from other sources to stay in business.”
The chamber and the EEDA are issuing the funds as grants – not loans – so the money does not need to be repaid. The funds come from the reserves of the Edmond Chamber and the EEDA.
“Yes, we are dipping into our own pockets to do this,” said Jordan.
Businesses may apply by visiting the Edmond Chamber website at edmondchamber.com or the EEDA website at eeda.com.
As part of the application, businesses are asked to share with the chamber their plans for how the money will be used, what changes are being made to help the business sustain during the national emergency, and if the business has a continuity plan for the next three to six months.
Also, the Edmond Chamber is reaching into its own pocket to pay for gift cards to chamber businesses to help local businesses survive the economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
For every $100 customers spend at chamber member businesses, the chamber will provide them with a $10 gift card to spend at the chamber business of their choosing.
“We are going to take it out of our reserve funds and buy the gift cards to rebate to people,” Jordan said. “We feel like this is the time to show the value that the chamber provides to our members, to be the voice for business and to kind of put our money where our mouth is, get out there and help them as much as we can.”
Shoppers can combine purchases made between March 20 and April 3 from participating chamber member businesses and submit their collected receipts to the chamber, which will provide $10 for every $100 spent up to $1,000, for a maximum of $100 in gift cards per household.