More than 170 small Yakima businesses have received almost $1.3 million in pandemic-specific financial aid.
The city of Yakima has offered three funding opportunities for COVID-19-related losses: a micro-enterprise grant program for local businesses with fewer than five employees, a small business grant program for local businesses with fewer than 25 employees, and a grant program for local nonprofits.
To date, 176 businesses in Yakima have received about $1.3 million from the city grants and the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Security (CARES) Act.
An update to the Yakima City Council on Tuesday noted 35 of the 99 businesses that applied were eligible. Recipients included salons, barbershops, tanning facilities, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, retail stores, a tattoo parlor and a dance studio, with disbursed funds topping $269,000.
An additional 45 microenterprises received funding through the city’s small business grant program, Yakima County CARES Act funding or other Department of Commerce funding, bringing the total up to 80 microenterprises and $479,641.
The city’s small business grant program, supported with CARES Act funding, received 369 applications. The 141 eligible businesses received almost $982,000. The majority of businesses included cosmetology shops, retail stores and restaurants, according to a city memo.
The city’s nonprofit grant program closed Oct. 30, with no updates available. The city also has received an additional $600,000 in community development block grant funding, which the Yakima City Council will have to decide how to use.
Yakima County emerged as a coronavirus hot spot over the spring and summer as the virus spread rapidly through immigrant agricultural communities and the broader population. In June, the county had almost as many cases as the state of Oregon.