Parma rolls out COVID-related small business owner economic assistance and residential rent relief programs

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PARMA, Ohio — The economic downturn related to the pandemic finds both renters and business owners living in uncertain times.In an effort to not only help out the community but attempt to maintain stability related to COVID-19, Parma recently announced two related initiatives that tap into the city’s nearly $900,000 in CARES Act funding tied to the federal Community Development Block Grant-CV (CDBG) program.“We’ve got a two-prong approach for the use of our CARES money,” Parma Community Department Services Director Erik Tollerup said. “It’s treated like CDBG money, but it’s specifically targeted for COVID-only response.“The small business grant program that we put together is aimed at businesses with 15 or less employees. The businesses can receive the lesser of either $10,000 or the average of their monthly operating expenses prior to COVID.”Business owners can start applying online beginning next week. Tollerup said the main criteria for the program is being able to show a 25 percent reduction in revenue during the pandemic compared to before the shutdown occurred.“The other aspect of it is if the business has five people or less including the owner,” Tollerup said. “That’s called a microenterprise. The microenterprise would be …

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