Salem, OR. May 28, 2020
SBJ Newsroom — Business Oregon is releasing a new Request for Proposals for $5 million in funding as part of the state’s recovery efforts for Oregon small businesses suffering in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Oregon Legislature and Governor Kate Brown allocated $5 million from the state’s General Fund, which is being combined with another $5 million redirected from existing programs at Business Oregon.
The total of $10 million of funding is being allocated through three Requests for Proposals (RFP) for different types of applicants. This is the second round of the three, which is open for proposals from Community Development Financial Institutions and Economic Development Districts. $5 million will go to these organizations in this round to in turn issue grants to small businesses with fewer than 25 employees. The program also encourages efforts to provide access to sole proprietors and historically disadvantaged businesses. The RFP for this round opens today and is due Monday, June 1, 2020.
The previous round of $2.5 million in funding was eligible for proposals from cities, counties, and Economic Development Districts that have existing small business COVID-relief programs or will stand up new programs to issue grants to local small businesses. Announcements will be made soon on the recipients of the first round, which closed for proposals on May 18. The remaining $2.5 million will be allocated through a final RFP in June.
To fill gaps not reached by other programs, these state funds are directed to adversely affected businesses that have been unable to receive federal CARES Act funding, including the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, Economic Injury Disaster Loan Emergency Advance program, or other federal programs for emergency pandemic funding. Businesses may use the proceeds for any business-related operating expenses, including helping businesses work to reopen in line with state guidance.