Orange County reopens CARES Act grants to small and home-based businesses

Application portal reopened Monday morning

Central Florida preparing for another round of Cares Act Funding

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – The Orange County government on Monday started accepting another round of application for CARES Act grants up to $10,000 for small businesses and up to $3,000 in micro-grants for home-based businesses.

Orange County Jerry Demings said the decision to reopen the portal for a sixth time was based on the amount of funding left and the demand due to recent layoffs associated with the coronavirus pandemic.

“With the recent rounds of permanent furloughs and layoffs in our community we believe that we have new demand for crisis assistance within our community,” Demings said.

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The grants are available to small businesses who have received funds from the federal paycheck protection program up to $100,000, previously that was limited to $75,000. Small businesses who qualify can receive up to $10,000.

The county is also offering micro-grants up to $3,000 for home-based businesses.

The application portal reopened at 9 a.m. Monday for small businesses and home-based businesses. Information on how to apply can be found at here.

Businesses that previously received a CARES Act grant from the county are not eligible.

Demings said the micro grants have averaged around $400 each, and at that rate the county can help about 700 more businesses with the remaining funding.

Since early this summer, 6,800 business have received grants from the program. The mayor said 67% of those businesses are minority and women owned.

According to the county website, they have allocated about 30% of the $72.9 million in CARES Act funding set aside for Small Business Financial Assistance. The county was awarded $243.2 million from the federal CARES Act.