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Augusta-Richmond County Small Business Relief Grants

Photo Courtesy of Augusta Convention & Visitors Bureau

The Small Business Relief Program has been established to assist businesses with 100 employees or fewer with operational and overhead expenses. This Program is funded through a portion of Augusta, Georgia’s disbursement of Community Development Block Grant funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development through the CARES Act.

These funds are intended to be used by communities to give relief to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Augusta-Richmond County Board of Commissioners have allocated $1.25 million to be disbursed by Augusta Housing and Community Development to local Small Businesses impacted by the pandemic.

If your business has received assistance with Small Business Relief from the City of Augusta through Housing and Community Development, your business may be eligible for up to $2,500 in additional funding.  You do not need to submit a new application, simply contact Jennifer Knudson at jknudson@augustaga.gov  or (706) 432-5270

APPLICATIONS & HOW TO APPLY?

DON’T DELAY!  Applications will be accepted until all funds have been allocated to eligible businesses.

Each business owner will be required to complete an application based on the objective requirements approved by the Augusta-Richmond County Board of Commissioners. Completed applications will be time stamped when submitted.

Each application will be certified by an internal review committee to certify that an applicant has met the criteria established by the Augusta-Richmond County Board of Commissioners before funds are released.

GRANT TIERS

Grant funding will be available in two different tiers based upon the number of the total number of employees reported on the business’ W3 Summary or IRS Form 941 prior to Feb. 15, 2020. The tiers of grant funding include up to $7,500 for a sole proprietorship or business with between 1 and 20 employees; up to $15,000 for 21-100 employees.

Eligibility will be verified via the submitted W-9 and/ or W-3 tax summary.

The tiers are as follows:
• 1 -20 employees – up to $7,500
• 21 to 100 employees – up to $15,000

ELIGIBILITY USES

Grant funds can be used to reimburse the cost of business interruption due to COVID-19 as a result of required closures, voluntary closures to promote social distancing, or decreased customer demand in the following categories:

  • Rent, lease, or mortgage payment for real property used for business purposes
  • Payroll expenses
  • Utility payments for business properties
  • Cost of critical business operations
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), sanitation supplies and equipment
  • Essential Business materials and supplies

ELIGIBLE BUSINESSES

Small businesses in the City of Augusta / Richmond County that have suffered significant, temporary loss of revenue or job losses directly related to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly businesses that have been directly affected by state business closure orders, are eligible.

  1. Businesses with their principle location inside Augusta / Richmond County.
  2. In business and operating a minimum of 1 year prior to March 1, 2020.
  3. Can demonstrate a reduction in sales/revenue due to COVID-19.
  4. Includes sole proprietors and independent contractors.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

The following are the basic eligibility requirements for applicants to be considered for grant funding through the Augusta CV-19 Small Business Relief Program. Augusta, Georgia staff will review each application to ensure that all eligibility requirements are met. It is vital for all applicants to submit the required accompanying documentation to ensure a complete application submittal.

The eligibility requirements are as follows:

  1. Business can demonstrate the Retention (or Creation) of at least one Full Time Equivalent employment opportunity for a low or moderate-income resident of Augusta-Richmond County, GA.
  2. Must have current City of Augusta, Georgia business license.
  3. Can demonstrate business interruption and revenue loss as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  4. Must certify on the application that use the grant funds will only be used to reimburse authorized business expenses.
  5. Plan to resume normal operations after emergency guidelines are lifted.
  6. Shall cooperate with appropriate officials for grant auditing purposes.
  7. Business can demonstrate ongoing business operations a minimum of 1 year prior to March 1, 2020.
  8. No owner, officer, partner, or principal actor of the business has a felony conviction for financial mismanagement within the last three years for which he or she is still serving a sentence (including prison, parole, and probation).
  9. Business is NOT publicly traded, partially owned by a hedge fund, or a corporate-owned franchise.
  10. Business does not have any current city, county, state or federal tax liens.
  11. Business does not have any current unpaid code enforcement liens and is not operating in violation of any state, federal or local laws.
  12. Commit to recommended COVID-19 Safety Guidelines put forth by local, State and Federal authorities.

REQUIRED DOCUMENTS

Please refer to the Required Documents Examples and Samples tab for additional clarity on documents needed for successful submission of the small business relief application.

  1. Completed W-9 form for business.  Note:  DBA, Tax ID Number (or Social Security Number for sole proprietor), and Mailing Address for Grant Check must match entries in General Information section.
  2. Completed City of Augusta “New Vendor Form”
  3. E-Verify Number. (For businesses with 10 or fewer employees, who are not required to use E-Verify by the State of Georgia, a signed and notarized Affidavit of Agreement must be submitted in place of an E-Verify Number.) Click here to download the affidavit.
  4. Valid state issued photo ID of business owner/signatory (**Only required for businesses with no E-Verify Number)
  5. Bills/invoices for eligible reimbursable COVID-19 expenses along with proof of payment.
  6. DUNS Number (if you don’t already have one, go here to get one: https://www.dnb.com/duns-number.html)
  7. 2019 Annual Profit and Loss Statement.
  8. Quarter 2 (April, May, June) 2020 Quarterly Profit and Loss Statement
  9. Signed and executed Augusta-Richmond County Small Business Relief program application.
  10. Copy of City of Augusta business license.
  11. For businesses with 2 to 100 employees, W3 Summary or IRS Form 941 prior to Feb. 15, 2020.
  12. Itemized Summary of eligible reimbursable COVID-19 expenses.
  13. On-Line Training Certification Course
  14. Completed Job Reporting Form, signed by the low or moderate-income employee of the business applying for assistance. Click here to download the form. 

Please use the links to U.S. SBA courses below, choose at least one course from the list and complete the on-line module as soon as you can.  The module will provide you the ability to print a customized Certificate of completion once you complete the module.  Please upload this Certificate to the space indicated in the application portal.

COMPLETE LIST OF DOCUMENT EXAMPLES AND SAMPLES

DISQUALIFIED BUSINESSES

  1. Companies that are publicly traded, partially owned by a hedge fund, or corporate-owned franchises are not eligible.
  2. Individuals or organizations who hold real property for passive sale or investment with no active ties to a for- profit business activities at the location.
  3. Businesses owned or operated by officials or employees of Augusta, Georgia government are not eligible grant recipients.
  4. Unpaid code enforcement liens or violation of any state, federal or local laws.
  5. Companies with legal actions against or from the City of Augusta Consolidated Government, including code enforcement liens are not eligible.
  6. Owner, officer, partner or principal actor of the business involved with financial mismanagement. This includes “Business Owner(s) with any conviction(s) for financial crimes within the last 3 years, with Business Owner(s) defined as: Managing Members and/or Officers.”

REQUIRED DOCUMENTS EXAMPLES & SAMPLES

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION, PLEASE REFER TO THE TEXT BELOW.

  • Completed W-9 form for business. DBA, Tax ID Number (or Social Security Number for sole proprietor), and Mailing Address for Grant Check must match entries in General Information section.
  • Completed City of Augusta “New Vendor Form”
  • E-Verify Number. (For businesses with 10 or fewer employees, who are not required to use E-Verify by the State of Georgia, a signed and notarized Affidavit of Agreement must be submitted in place of an E-Verify Number.) Click here to download the affidavit.
  • Valid state issued photo ID of business owner/signatory (**Only required for businesses with no E-Verify Number)
  • Copy of current City of Augusta business license
  • Bills/invoices for expenses meeting eligible reimbursable COVID-19 expenses along with proof of payment.
  • Itemized Summary of eligible reimbursable COVID-19 expenses. (Click here to see an example).  In addition to the Itemized Summary of eligible reimbursable Covid-19 expenses, applicants must supply copies of the bill and proof of payment for these expenses.
  • The Job Reporting form is used to demonstrate the Full Time Equivalent (i.e. one 35+ hour/week or two part-time) positions held by low and moderate-income residents of Augusta-Richmond County, Georgia that were retained or created to meet the requirements of this program.  Further details on this criteria can be found in the Program guidelines at https://www.augustaga.gov/DocumentCenter/View/14046/Augusta_CV-19_Small_Business_Relief_Program_Guidelines_2021

Business Financials

For Individuals (Sole Proprietors and individual/single-owner LLCs)

Sole Proprietor Certification

  • 2020 Schedule C (Form 1040) –OR–
  • If no 2020 Schedule C is available, provide 2019 Schedule C (Form 1040) 
  • Q2 (April, May, June) 2020 Profit and Loss Statement

For Corporations (C-Corps, S-Corps, corporate Limited Liability Corporations (LLCs)

  • 2020 Corporation Income Tax Return (Form 1120 or Form 1120-S –OR–
  • If no 2020 tax return is available, provide 2019 tax return
  • Q2 (April, May, June) 2020 Profit and Loss Statement

For Partnerships

  • 2020 Return of Partnership Income (Form 1065) –OR–
  • If no 2020 tax return is available, provide 2019 tax return
  • Q2 (April, May, June) 2020 Profit and Loss Statement 

For Non-Profits 

  • 2020 IRS Form 990 –OR–
  • If no 2020 IRS Form 990 is available, provide 2019 IRS Form 990
  • Q2 (April, May, June) 2020 Profit and Loss Statement

Staffing

W3 Summary or IRS FORM 941 (from 1st quarter 2020 or, if not completed, 4th quarter 2019).

Sole proprietors may complete and attach a certification stating that business owner is the sole proprietor with no additional employees or subcontracted workers.