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  • Madison Main Street Program Announces Business Resiliency Fund

    Rent Assistance Available

    Thanks to a thoughtful grant from the Community Foundation’s Rapid Response Grant Program, Madison Main Street has established a Business Resiliency Fund to assist downtown business with covering rent or mortgage payments in May.

    A recent survey of downtown businesses showed that 66% are concerned about making rent or mortgage payments, an important immediate need. According to Main Street director Austin Sims, 34% of downtown businesses are at risk of closing permanently within the next 3 months. “We’re hoping this grant will make a difference,” Sims said.

    ELIGIBILITY. For-profit businesses located in the downtown district—from riverfront to base of hill, and from the bridge to the base of Hanover Hill—are eligible to apply. The business must have been directly impacted by the pandemic. The grant will match up to 50% of the rent/mortgage, and Madison Main Street hopes to extend the program into June, depending on demand and the limited funds available. (See guidelines at left.) Madison Main Street hopes to secure additional funds to support this and other downtown business needs during the crisis. 

    GRANT GUIDELINES
    Funds will be used to assist with rent and mortgage payments in May. Every effort will be made to serve as many businesses as possible, funds permitting, and to serve diverse types of downtown businesses.

    Eligibility
    Applicants must be for-profit businesses located in the Downtown Madison historic commercial district that have been negatively impacted by the recent business closures. In case of multiple businesses under single ownership, only one business may apply.

    Application
    An e-mail indicating intent to apply should be sent NO LATER THAN FRIDAY, APRIL 24, to madisonmainstreetprogram@gmail.com. This should come from the business owner and include the name of the business, number of FT/PT employees, and the amount of monthly rent or mortgage. The e-mail should describe the negative impact and note how the business has been working to stay viable.

    Notification
    Applicants will be notified of their status by April 28 and asked to fill out a simple form with additional business details.

    Other commitments
    Recipients must intend, if possible, to remain open through the end of the calendar year and to retain employees. Reimbursement Up to 50% of rent or mortgage will be reimbursed starting May 1, with proof of payment, subject to limited funds. A second month’s reimbursement starts on June 1 if funds are still available.