MINI GRANT APPLICATION

BUSINESS EQUITY FUND GRANT PROGRAM:
The City of Charlottesville Office of Economic Development's Minority Business Program has allocated $35,000 for direct business support to 14 socially disadvantaged businesses. These mini grants are for existing City of Charlottesville businesses that are owned by individuals who are considered socially disadvantaged (i.e., those who have been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice or cultural bias because of their identity as members of a group). Priority will be given to those who were not assisted financially from the Office of Economic Development in 2020. Eligible businesses are allowed to receive one mini grant to clear any unpaid fees, taxes, or loans acquired through the City of Charlottesville. If the business owner is current on the aforementioned list, they can use the mini grant for other pre-approved uses (e.g., rent, insurance, operating expenses, inventory, equipment, etc.). The $2,500 mini grant will be awarded after recipients complete a business training course and at least two one-on-one business consultations with the Central Virginia Small Business Development Center. Estimated training time is approximately five hours.

USE OF FUNDS:
Grant funds can be used to clear any unpaid fees, taxes (real estate, business tangible property tax, BPOL), or loans acquired through the City of Charlottesville. If the business owner is current on the aforementioned list, they can use the mini grant for other pre-approved uses (e.g., rent, insurance, operating expenses, inventory, equipment, etc.). Businesses who have already received BRACE or GO Hire in 2020 and the Small Business Relief Grant (July) or Small Business Relief Grant 2.0 (October) are still eligible to apply. Preference will be given to socially disadvantaged businesses who have not been assisted financially from the Office of Economic Development.
CRITERIA:
  • Current physical location in the City of Charlottesville (PO Boxes not accepted - can be commercial or home-based)
  • Must provide most current business license (Not having a 2020 business license will NOT disqualify you - just provide your most recent license.)
  • Must agree to complete Central Virginia Small Business Development Center virtual training course and at least two one-on-one consultations.
  • Business must be at least 51% owned by a socially disadvantaged individual (The following groups of individuals are deemed to be socially disadvantaged: Black Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, Subcontinent Asian Americans. Individuals not members of one of the listed designated groups may establish social disadvantage based on personal experiences of substantial and chronic social disadvantage in American society, which is the result of a distinguishing feature (e.g., race, ethnic origin, gender, physical disability) that has contributed to the social disadvantage.)
  • Business owner(s) must meet HUD household income thresholds (Provide most recent income tax return.)
    • # Persons in Family/Household Maximum Yearly Income
      1 Person $52,600
      2 People $60,100
      3 People $67,600
      4 People $75,100
      5 People $81,150
      6 People $87,150
      7 People $93,150
      8 People $99,150

APPLICATION PROCESS:
Applications for the Business Equity Fund Grant will be accepted beginning Monday, January 11th at 9am to Friday, January 22nd at 5pm. During that time, all applications will be reviewed for completeness. If there are more qualified applications than funds, then preference will be given to socially disadvantaged businesses who have not been assisted financially from the Office of Economic Development. For assistance with the application, please contact us at mbp@charlottesville.gov

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* 1. Contact Information

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* 2. Is your business a for-profit business located within City of Charlottesville city limits? Please note the business does not have to a 'brick and mortar' business. Home-based businesses are eligible.

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* 3. Has your business been in existence at least 6 months?

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* 4. Is your business at least 51% owned by a socially disadvantaged individual who has been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice or cultural bias because of his/her identity as a member of a group? (Please see definition above under CRITERIA.)

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* 5. Is your business registered as a vendor with the City of Charlottesville? Please note this will NOT disqualify you.

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* 6. Do you have a current 2020 business license? Please note this will NOT disqualify you. 

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* 7. Please upload a copy of your most current City of Charlottesville business license.

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* 8. Is the household income of the business's primary owner(s) below the maximum HUD household income limits? (See table above under CRITERIA.)

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* 9. Please upload a copy of your most recent income tax return.

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* 10. Are you willing to participate in a virtual training course and at least two one-on-one consultations with a business advisor with the Central Virginia Small Business Development Center?

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* 11. If you are awarded a mini grant, what do you plan to use the funds for?

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