A customer at The Floral Craft on Fletcher Parkway in El Cajon, a San Diego County small business. The county has launched a new coronavirus relief loan program. Photo by Chris Stone

Local small businesses and restaurants that have suffered financial losses due to Covid-19 can apply for $17 million in grants from the County of San Diego.

The Board of Supervisors approved a new Small Business Stimulus Program Tuesday for both for-profit and nonprofit businesses.

Applicants must be able to show that the pandemic directly caused losses and costs they’ve incurred.

To qualify businesses must:

  • Employ 100 or fewer people.
  • Be headquartered in San Diego County.
  • Have a minimum one-year operating history as of Feb. 14, 2020.
  • Show documentation of financial hardship because of Covid-19.

In May, supervisors approved using a portion of the county’s CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Fund funds to help small businesses. With Tuesday’s vote, the supervisors approved the implementation of the program.

Officials urge businesses to apply early. Applications are available now through Oct. 16, as long as funding remains available. Officials on the website warned applying might take more than one try.

“We’re experiencing a high number of submissions,” they wrote. “If your first attempt isn’t successful, please try again later.”

For more information and the application, visit the stimulus website.

The county also has become eligible for $53.7 million in additional federal CARES Act money through the state.

– Staff reports

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