A new grant program, authorized by the Utah Legislature and funded by the federal CARES Act, launched last week to help retail business recover from COVID-19 shutdowns. Known as the “Shop In Utah” program, it is managed by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and began accepting applications on July 27.

To qualify for a grant, a business negatively impacted by the pandemic must offer a discount, coupon or other incentives with an estimated value to their customers of at least 50 percent of the grant amount. Because the Legislature intended this grant to be primarily used to help Utah small businesses in various industries, at least 75 percent of grant funds will be distributed to Utah companies with 250 or fewer full-time employees.

“This grant will help businesses and save consumers money,” said Val Hale, GOED’s executive director. “We hope qualifying Utah businesses take advantage of this great opportunity to receive support from the federal CARES Act fund. We also encourage consumers to shop in Utah and support Utah businesses.”

The grant program information and application are also available at coronavirus.utah.gov.

GOED said that Shop In Utah grant amounts may not exceed the business entity’s coronavirus pandemic revenue decline, with a maximum of $50,000.

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