Bergen County is extending the deadline to a program to help small businesses affected by the coronavirus.
Bergen County Executive Jim Tedesco announced that the deadline to apply for the Bergen County CARES Small Business Grant Program has been extended to 5 p.m. Oct. 30. Additionally, county officials said the program will begin accepting applications for small businesses with 30 or less full-time employees.
The program had previously only deemed businesses with 19 or fewer full-time employees eligible to apply. Approximately $10.7 million has been awarded to 1,402 small businesses in Bergen County thus far with 1,400 applications still under review.
Eligible businesses will continue to qualify for up to $10,000 in financial relief, which once approved they will not have to pay back.
To qualify for the Bergen County CARES Small Business Grant Program businesses must fall under the following criteria:
- Businesses must have a physical location in Bergen County and must provide evidence that they are a valid operating business in the State of New Jersey (i.e. Certificate of Formation or Incorporation, latest corporate tax returns, sales tax returns and/or payroll tax returns).
- Must have 30 or fewer full-time employees.
- Businesses must have been open and operating on March 1, 2020.
- Businesses owned by county employees and elected officials, as well as their immediate families, are not eligible.
Businesses that have received other financial assistance are eligible to apply but priority will be given to businesses that have not received any federal grant assistance, New Jersey Economic Development Authority, US Small Business Administration grants or other grant assistance.
Receipt of grant funds through the Bergen County Small Business Grant Program is a one-time opportunity. Any business that has received grant funds during any phase of the Bergen County Small Business Grant Program is not eligible to receive additional grant funds through the Program.
To apply for the program and for more information, business owners can visit www.BergenCountyCARES.org. Businesses that have already applied do not need not to re-apply, according to county officials.
The program is funded through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act Federal relief fund. For administrative and troubleshooting questions please email BergenCountyCares@co.bergen.nj.us or call the troubleshooting hotline at 201-336-6011.