Homes weren’t the only things damaged during Hurricane Harvey. Since the massive storm made landfall over two years ago, some small businesses have struggled to recover from the damages it caused. In some areas of Houston, local businesses had a decline of 50 percent or more in revenue. Now, a program from the Texas General Land Office is offering local businesses a second chance with the dispersal of $100 million in grants.
About the Aid Program
Known as Texas Back in Business, the program uses funds that were provided by Congress in 2018 and given to the Texas General Land Office to disperse among area residents and businesses. By awarding amounts of $50,000 to $250,000 to local businesses, officials hope to make a lasting impact on the local economy. Owners of small businesses affected by Hurricane Harvey have until March 2, 2020 to apply for a grant. The application is free when visiting the program’s website.
“Our businesses here have really struggled since the hurricane and this is a one-time opportunity that is a new grant through the General Land Office to help our businesses recover,” said Deanna Spruce, public information officer for Aransas County long-term recovery.
According to the program’s site, these grants are meant to save jobs, create jobs, help small businesses stabilize and grow, create economic development, and meet local needs. While the Texas General Land Office authorized use of the funds, an independent contractor is responsible for the distribution of them. Notably, this program is not a loan and businesses will not have an obligation to pay back their grant if approved by the state. Business owners are expected to use the grants to hire staff, buy equipment, repair their building, and any other type of recovery effort.