Restart Mississippi – Mississippi Governor and Legislature Working to Establish Fund for Small Businesses
This past Thursday, State Officials reached an agreement to collaborate on appropriating and administering the $1.25 billion federal allotment to the state as part of the Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) provision of the CARES Act. On Friday, May 8, the Mississippi Senate began developing a framework for legislation to establish a grants program to use part of the $1.25 billion federal allotment to Mississippi from the Coronavirus Relief Fund established by the CARES Act. As part of this process, Mississippi can establish a grant program for small businesses. The purpose of the fund is to reimburse businesses for cost of interruption caused by forced closures.
The following are some key points in the initial Senate proposal:
- Name of Act: “2020 COVID-19 Mississippi Business Assistance Act.”
- $100 million fund established known as Back to Business Mississippi Grant Fund.
- Grants to eligible businesses with a net worth or annual income of $500,000 or less that were forced or voluntarily closed due to COVID-19.
- Eligible business hasn’t received federal aid from March 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.
- Grants ranging from $1,000 to $25,000 to eligible businesses with no more than 50 employees.
- $15 million set aside for minority-owned eligible businesses with Mississippi owners.
- The Mississippi Development Authority administers grant program following guidance issued by the U.S. Treasury for eligible expenses.
Stay tuned for more to come as the legislative process proceeds and Mississippi works to get restarted.
(MCBL&F Government Affairs Committee Chairman)