BCS leaders working to provide funds to small business owners

BRAZOS COUNTY, Tex. (KBTX) - Community leaders are coming together to try and help boost the local economy during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During a special meeting Monday, the Bryan City Council agreed to a partnership with the United Way of the Brazos Valley.

A $500,000 match grant will go towards the Brazos Valley COVID-19 Community Relief Fund. Thanks to donations by community leaders, the relief fund has nearly $300,000 already.

The money will go toward small businesses as payroll and rent grants and to local non-profits for food, rent, and utility assistance.

“We just felt like it was so critical to start helping people as soon as we can. Whether it be a grant to small businesses or a grant to a non-profit. Ultimately we want to get it in their hands as quickly as we can so they can get it in the hands of their employees or the individuals in need to help sustain people right now because that's the most important part,” said Alison Prince, CEO & President of United Way of the Brazos Valley.

The City of College Station also held a special meeting Monday where they approved nearly $300,000 to go toward a Economic Assistance Grant .

The money is being taken from College Station Community Development Block Grant Program, which is funded by the federal government.

Director of Community Development, Debbie Eller says there are certain requirements small business owners must meet.

“That they have a financial need. That they’ll be able to stay open and continue to employ those low-income workers,” said Eller.

Eller says the purpose is to keep businesses open, preventing job loss in low-income families.

“We wanted to make sure that the low-income employees that are meant to be assisted with our grant funds are receiving that assistance from the businesses they work for,” said Eller.

College Station will start receiving applications for its Economic Assistance Grant starting Tuesday. You can find more information by clicking here.

Applications for the Brazos Valley COVID-19 Community Relief Fund are closed but can expect to be back open within the next two weeks. You can find more information by clicking here