San Joaquin County announced new financial assistance programs for families, small businesses and organizations that have been fiscally impacted by COVID-19. The current round for accepting applications closes on Jan. 31.

"San Joaquin County's CARES Act grant program has already provided $7.7 million in small business cash grants which has been tremendously helpful to struggling businesses and non-profits throughout the County," said Kathy Miller, Chair of the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors.

"Because the COVID-19 pandemic continues to devastate many businesses as well as families, the County has expanded its grant program efforts to assist as many qualifying organizations and individuals as possible within the community.”

The Board of Supervisors approved this third round of grants in mid-December and opened up applications last week.

$10 million from the County contingency fund was designated for its "Small Business Grant Program," which helps businesses within the county with rental/lease, mortgage and personal protective equipment expenses. In order to qualify, business applicants must have been operating prior to March 1, 2020, must operate out of a physical location and must employ no more than 100 full-time employees in addition to showing proof of financial hardship due to COVID-19.

If deemed qualified, businesses can be granted up to $25,000 from the county.

An additional $5 million was approved by the board for a new "Family COVID-19 Assistance Grant Program" catered toward individuals and families in need of rental/mortgage and utility assistance due financial hardship caused by effects of the pandemic. Applicants must meet a maximum monthly income, depending on household size. A family of four, for example, must not make more than $6,250 a month in order to qualify for assistance.

Grants for this program are limited to $5,000 per household.

Full details for these two programs can be at the county's website: https://www.sjgov.org/covid19/grants/.

• Contact Tracy Press at tpnew@tracypress.com or call 209-835-3030.

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