COVID-19 Business Relief Grant Program

The Blaine City Council has approved an emergency small business grant program that utilizes CARES Act dollars that have been provided to the city by the federal government. The amount of $500,000 has been allocated to the grant program which will be distributed in two different rounds with $250,000 available in each round. The maximum grant amount is $10,000.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicant must be locally owned, operated, and domiciled in the State of Minnesota with a physical establishment in the City of Blaine. If there is a parent company or a second location outside of the City of Blaine, only the entity located in Blaine will be eligible. 
  • Applicant must be in good standing with the Minnesota Secretary of State and the Minnesota Department of Revenue as of January 1, 2020. If there is an issue pending with the Minnesota Secretary of State, applicant may still apply for the grant, but will need to demonstrate the issue has been satisfactorily resolved in order to be eligible and receive grant funds. 
  • If required by either the state, county or city, applicant must be licensed, in good standing.
  • Applicant must be current on property taxes as of March 1, 2020.
  • Applicant must employ 50 or less full time equivalent (FTE) employees as of January 1, 2020. 
  • Applicant must disclose all federal, state, or local grant or loan applications for which applicant has applied which has been received or remains pending at the time of application.
  • Applicant must certify in good faith that the uncertainty of current conditions makes the grant request necessary to support ongoing operations.
  • Applicant may be a sole proprietor.
  • Applicant may be a nonprofit organization.

Eligible Expenses

  • Commercial lease or mortgage payments.
  • Accounts payable (AP) if the AP is a COVID-19 related expense incurred since March 1, 2020. 
  • Payroll, unless the business received Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds or pandemic unemployment insurance (UI) to cover the same period payroll expenses.  
  • Reopening costs or safety improvement costs expended since March 1, 2020 (i.e. outdoor seating, plexiglass, cleaning products, re-staffing costs, etc.) 
  • Non-government operating utilities or fees for those facilities interrupted or forced to shut down incurred after March 1, 2020.
  • Costs associated with screening employees for COVID-19 upon business reopening.

Detailed Grant Program Information (PDF) Opens in new window

Application Process

The next application window will open on September 21. A link to the application portal will be available on this page during any application windows. Applications will be competitive and ranked based on criteria established by the city.

Watch a Virtual Informational Session

To learn more about this grant program please watch an informational session. Please note that this informational session was recorded during round one of grant applications, there have been some modifications to the program since the informational session.

Watch Recording