City to apply for grant to assist community businesses impacted by COVID-19

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By Jessie Wagone

 

The city of McPherson is submitting an application for Community Development Block Grant – Coronavirus (CDBG-CV) funds through the Kansas Department of Commerce to assist in COVID-19 response for affected local businesses. City Administrator Nick Gregory spoke about the application process during Monday’s city commission meeting. 

“We intend to request $300,000, which is the maximum allowed,” Gregory said. “A public hearing is required before applying for a CDBG Grant.  The public hearing for this request is scheduled for Tuesday, May 26, 2020, at 8:30 a.m., in the City Commission Room at the McPherson Municipal Center, 400 E. Kansas Avenue.  At that time, we will also bring a resolution authorizing approval to apply for the grant and select a grant administrator, which is required.”

Gregory said the city is currently seeking businesses in McPherson that would be interested and feel they will qualify and have need for funding for the CDBG-CV funds.  To qualify, businesses have to have between one and 50 employees that would be retained and 51 percent of full-time equivalent employees in total would have to meet the low-to-moderate household income for McPherson County.   For McPherson County, the household income limits are as follows:

Number in household LMI Income
1 $40,850
2 $46,650
3 $52,500
4 $58,300
5 $63,000
6 $67,650
7 $72,300
8 $77,000

“By applying for $300,000, the city will need to show justification of a need,” Gregory said. “As a result, we are trying to gauge interest from local businesses and industry. If you believe that your business is a strong candidate for this program, please contact me at 620-245-2535 or email at nickg@mcpcity.com.” 

Grant funds can be used for things including but not limited to:

  • Working capital such as wages, utilities, rent, etc.;
  • The purchase of 60 days’ worth of inventory needed to reopen (60 days will begin on the day the business is allowed to reopen).

Grant funds cannot be used to pay off: 

  • Existing debt;
  • Expenses that have been specifically reimbursed by other federal funds.

Businesses may be eligible for the following amounts:

  • For businesses with 1-5 employees, up to $25,000 per FTE can be awarded, with a maximum funding of $30,000 per company.
  • For businesses with 6-50 employees, up to $35,000 per FTE can be awarded, with a maximum funding of $50,000 per company.

During the meeting, commissioners also agreed to reopen the dog park and playgrounds to the community. The city is only able to sanitize playground equipment and gates three times a week. Therefore, commissioners encourage community members to sanitize their hands before and after use, practice social distancing and wash their hands. 

In other business the commission: 

  • Approved special assessments for Eagle’s Wings development.
  • Approved bonds.
  • Received updates on current road projects.
  • Approved payment of ArchiveSocial invoice.