The State of California has extended the deadline for the Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program. The extension began on Dec. 30, 2020 and will continue through Jan. 13 at midnight. Businesses may apply online at California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program (careliefgrant.com).

Galt’s Economic Development Manager Amie Mendes said the help is definitely needed.

“It’s not a significant amount of money – but at least it’s something that doesn’t have to be paid back,” Mendes said. “This is not the time where businesses want to take on additional debt; they just need help to survive until things get back to some sort of normalcy.”

Mendes said that the grant is not first come, first serve, so businesses just need to make sure they have their application in by Jan. 13.

The amount of grant funding ranges from $5,000 to $25,000. Businesses are eligible based on their annual revenue as documented in their most recent tax return: businesses with an annual revenue of $1,000 to $100,000 may receive $5,000; and greater than $100,000 and up to $1,000,000 annual revenue may qualify for $15,000; incomes greater than $1,000,000 and up to $2,500,00 may qualify for $25,000 in grants.

Business owners will need the following documentation:

Application Certification: Signed certification used to certify your business. Business Financial Information: Your most recent tax return filed (2019 or 2018) – provided in an electronic form for online upload, such as PDF/JPEG or other approved upload format. A copy of official filing with the California Secretary of State, if applicable, or local municipality for the business, such as one of the following: Articles of Incorporation, Certificate of Organization, Fictitious Name of Registration or Government-Issued Business License and a Government Issued Photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport.

One complete application will qualify you to be considered for both rounds; please only apply once.

Restaurants have been hit especially hard during the pandemic. Travis Hausauer and his wife own and operate the Squeeze Burger on Twin Cities Road. He said he had to lay off most of his staff during the first shutdown.

“We hired most of them back once they let us open up,” Hausauer said. “It’s been a real challenge. We kept them on, even though they shut us down again. We have really good employees and don’t want to lose them.”

Hausauer said it doesn’t help that minimum wage has gone up a dollar. He said the Small Business Relief would help, especially since it doesn’t have to be paid back.

“Any money is good,” Hausauer said. “We just try to keep a good attitude and do what we can to keep the doors open.”

Lori Martin owns and operates Sheila’s Country Rose Florist and had to lay off most of her staff.

“I did apply back in May when we didn’t know what was going to happen,” Martin said. “I didn’t qualify. Right now, we’re doing pretty good, but there’s just three of us working.”