EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — There’s now more help for small businesses who have been affected by the pandemic.

The El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce announced their “Stay Safe Small Business Program,” which will award $250,000 in grants to small and minority-owned businesses. Grants will range from $1,500 to $5,000.

“This grant program is an invaluable resource that will mitigate the shattering effects caused by the pandemic, and propel small businesses toward desperately needed recovery,” said EPHCC CEO Cindy Ramos-Davidson.

To qualify for this grant program, a business must be in areas outside the city limits of El Paso such as Anthony, Canutillo, Horizon City, Socorro or Fabens.

A business must have been in operation since Jan. 1, 2019, employ less than 20 people, and must not exceed an annual gross revenue of $1 million to receive grant funds. A business may provide an Assumed Name License or State of Texas business filing, a Texas State Sales Tax Certificate, or a utility bill with an address to verify that they meet these criteria. Lastly, a business must demonstrate that they have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

To confirm a negative impact due to the pandemic, a business can provide either a profit and loss statement from the same month of 2019 and 2010 or a bank statement from the same month of 2019 and 2020.

The funds will enable businesses to purchase safety materials and other pandemic related modifications to ensure the comfort and security of both customers and employees. These items can include, but are not limited to sneeze guards, disinfectant products, face shields, and spacing decals.

In addition to these coronavirus safeguards, businesses may also use allocated grant funds to purchase basic technology that would help operate a business more effectively. This technology can include items such as a laptop, computer speakers or a web camera.

The grant money can also be used to pay for current and/or past due rent, current and/or past due business utilities, as well as supplies to operate the business.

To apply, call the EPHCC office at (915) 566-4066 and ask to speak to Elvira Soto or Abigail Tarango.

Completed applications can be emailed to Jessica Estrada at jestrada@ephcc.org or hand delivered to the EPHCC office at 2401 E. Missouri Ave from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 a.m.

The deadline to apply for this grant program is Dec. 9.

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