Lexington offers more relief for small businesses

Updated: May. 18, 2021 at 11:30 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The Small Business Economic Recovery Program in Lexington started Tuesday, May 18.

It’s the second round of economic stimulus grants for small businesses in Lexington.

Small businesses with 50 or fewer employees and restaurants with 100 or fewer employees are eligible for up to $25,000 in assistance. It’s an effort to help places still struggling to make a final push as we inch our way toward normalcy.

The main difference in this year’s program is small businesses must meet benchmarks for additional employment and payroll.

That’s something that’s already a goal for Sav’s owner Manadou Sav Savane.

“If I qualify for that grant, I’m ready to hire people and I’m ready to pay more,” Savane said.

Sav, as customers often call him, says his first grant was a help during a trying time. Sav says some of the money went towards a brand new patio, but most of it went towards employees and payroll.

Sav says the industry is changing. He says it’s is harder to find employees and many people are expecting more.

Companies that don’t meet the benchmarks will have to pay back the grant on a scale related to their performance.

Businesses must also meet certain criteria in order to apply.

They must be in Lexington, they must have been open since Jan. 1, 2021, they must be able to retain or exceed current employment and payroll levels, and they must be up to date on their taxes.

Mayor Linda Gorton said local businesses give Lexington the money needed to provide services for people who live in the city. She said this program will help with what’s hopefully the last leg of the pandemic.

“Everything will be opened up wide this summer and this will help them you know kind of get across that boundary to really sore as our economy picks up.” Mayor Gorton said.

$2.5 million has been set aside for the program. Some of that money is going toward administrative costs to keep it running.

You can apply for the program by visiting this link.

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