Vermilion: Grants, resources available to support small businesses during pandemic

Posted by: Lydia Kirschner  | Tuesday, June 30, 2020

STATEHOUSE (June 30, 2020) – As Indiana continues to get back on track, State Rep. Ann Vermilion (R-Marion) said the state is dedicating nearly $44 million in federal funds to help small businesses and manufacturers impacted by COVID-19.

"The public health emergency has impacted a number of industries, and it's really taking its toll on small businesses," Vermilion said. "These additional funding sources and resources are dedicated to meeting the unique needs of Hoosier business owners as they continue to play a key role in our state's economic success."

Through the federal CARES Act, $30 million has been dedicated to the Small Business Restart Fund. Hoosier small businesses with fewer than 50 employees and $5 million in annual revenue that experienced at least a 40% drop in revenue can apply for grants to cover expenses related to the public health crisis. Vermilion said these expenses may include rent or mortgage payments, lease payments for real or personal property, utilities and safety investments like personal protective equipment and infrastructure improvements to keep employees and customers safe. According to Vermilion, at least $5 million will be reserved for certified minority- and women-owned businesses. The deadline to apply for a grant is Sept. 30. For more information on this program, including additional eligibility requirements, visit backontrack.in.gov.

The Indiana Small Business Development Center will utilize nearly $3.7 million over the next 18 months to offer increased resources for Hoosier entrepreneurs and small businesses. Vermilion said this funding will help provide no-cost services like counseling and training for local businesses impacted by COVID-19. Visit isbdc.org/indianacovid19smallbusiness for more information.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. approved $10 million to launch the Economic Activity Stabilization and Enhancement program, which Vermilion said will support technology and operational advancements in the manufacturing industry. Through this program, local manufacturers will be able to apply for support through the Smart & Advanced Manufacturing Focus Fund to invest in new developments. Manufacturing Readiness Grants will be available in July to companies committed to modernizing their operations or those investing in health care manufacturing technology. Additionally, a Smart Manufacturing Studio is being developed to provide lab space and access to state-of-the-art equipment to businesses so they can train employees, validate technologies and conduct third-party pilot manufacturing. More information can be found by visiting iedc.in.gov and searching "Economic Activity Stabilization and Enhancement."

"Not only do we need to support our local small businesses, but we also need to provide opportunities for manufacturers to be innovative during a slowdown," Vermilion said. "They are crucial to jumpstarting our economy."   

Vermilion said these resources are in addition to the Indiana Small Business PPE Marketplace, which currently provides masks, hand sanitizer and face shields to Hoosier small businesses at no cost. Visit backontrack.in.gov/ppemarketplace.htm for details.

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State Rep. Ann Vermilion (R-Marion) represents House District 31,

which includes all of Blackford County and portions of Delaware, Grant and Wells counties.

Click here to download a high-resolution photo.