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Minnesota businesses can now apply for $62 million in COVID-19 relief funding

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KTTC) -- Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz announced on Tuesday that businesses impacted by COVID-19 can now apply for the $62.5 million Small Business Relief Grants Program.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development is now accepting applications from businesses with 50 or fewer employees for grants of up to $10,000.

Walz said the funds will be evenly distributed between businesses in Greater Minnesota and the Twin Cities metro. He said at least $10 million in relief will go to minority-owned businesses, $2.5 million to veteran-owned businesses and $2.5 million to businesses owned by women.

“Minnesota’s small business owners deserve support through this unprecedented time,” said Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan. “I’m proud of this program to support our historically under-supported communities, including our business owners who are women, veterans, Black, Indigenous, and people of color. But we have a lot of work left to do to rebuild our communities.”

Walz said the applications accepted for a period of 10 days, and the application period will close at 5 p.m. on July 2. A randomized, computer-generated lottery process will be used to select businesses to receive the awards, Walz said. The online application is available here.

Walz said grant funds can be used "to support payroll expenses, rent, mortgage payments, utility bills, and other similar business expenses."

“COVID-19 has brought historic challenges for our small business owners,” Walz said in a news release. “This program is a result of bipartisan collaboration and conversations with the communities most impacted by this pandemic. I encourage our small business owners to apply for this funding, which will provide a lifeline for our communities and help Minnesota build a stronger and more equitable economy.”

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