WA State grants for pandemic assistance – application portal now open

Washington Department of Commerce grants

Apply Now – Working WA Small Business Grant Portal for Applications Now Open

As of December 2nd, the Washington Department of Commerce is accepting applications for $50 million in small business grant relief funds for industry sectors most impacted by the pandemic and pandemic related regulations. For Washington’s breweries, now is the time to apply for grants.

These grants will go fast and applications received before December 11th will get priority.

You can apply for the grants here.


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Application & Grant Criteria

Priority for grants will be given to:

Small businesses with annual revenues of $5 million or less in 2019.

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Businesses in the sectors that are most impacted by the recent public health measures as well as businesses in sectors that have experienced significant, cumulative impacts. Examples include full-service restaurants, fitness centers, bowling alleys and music and event venues.

Certain nonprofits may also be eligible if they have a primary business activity that falls into a similar category as noted above. Example – a nonprofit full-service restaurant or nonprofit music venue.

If Commerce is able to fund all the eligible applicants from the priority pool, and funds remain, we may be able to provide grants to additional businesses or nonprofits from other sectors or who have annual revenues larger than $5 million.

The maximum award grant will be up to $20,000.

The grant can only cover expenses or costs incurred due to COVID-19 and that were necessary to continue business operations.

How to Apply

The online application portal will open early next week (the week of Nov. 30). The portal link will be available at www.commerce.wa.gov/bizgrants. Additional information about eligibility and prioritization will also be posted there.

Priority will be given to applications received by Dec. 10, 2020. If Commerce is able to fund all the applicants who submit by that time, we may be able to consider applicants who submit after the 10th.

Application Checklist

Applicant W-9 Request for Taxpayer Identification Number

Copy of valid government-issued photo I.D.

For tribal-member owned businesses: license or certification if business activity is conducted outside the tribal jurisdiction; letter or certification from the tribe recognizing you as a business if business activity is within the tribal jurisdiction.

Copy of 2019 Tax Return or other confirmation of Business Gross Revenues for 2019.

For businesses with a physical location, evidence of that location, such as lease, tax statement, utility bill, etc.

NAICS code or clear description of your primary business activity. A NAICS code is helpful, but not necessary. If you have never used a NAICS code, you can learn more here: What is a NAICS Code? and explore NAICS codes to see which one fits your business.

Assistance for Workers & Individuals

In addition to business relief, additional funds will be released for workers and individuals impacted by the pandemic, including:

· $20 million in rental assistance is added to the current Eviction Rent Assistance Program. Partner agencies in each county, not Commerce, provide the assistance payments to landlords to cover their qualified tenants. Note that coverage was expanded from 3 to 6 months of eligible rent. Find the list of appropriate contacts by county here.

· $15 million in utility payment assistance expands the existing Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), also administered through agency partners at the county level, not Commerce. Find information and contacts for each county here.

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