College Park approves $1.7M coronavirus relief fund

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Michael Theis/Route 1 Reporter

A streetscape in downtown College Park

College Park City Council unanimously approved a $1.65 million coronavirus relief package designed to aid businesses and provide direct aid to city residents affected by the pandemic’s disruptions. 

The vote took place at College Park’s May 26, 2020, City Council meeting, held virtually. The measure is expected to be funded through federal disaster aid reimbursements. 

The biggest line item in the relief package is a $1 million small business assistance grant program. Only College Park city businesses with 25 or fewer full-time may apply. The program provides up to $15,000 per business for to offset losses from business interruptions or decreased customer demand caused by the emergency measures imposed to try to stem the spread of the disease. The grants are further restricted to commercial entities with no more than 10 outlets. Preliminary restrictions would also disqualify businesses that received assistance from Prince George’s County’s COVID-19 Business Relief Fund. 

The measure also allocated $200,000 for emergency financial aid to city residents. Grants of up to $5,000 per household can be issued for expenses such as rent, food, utilities and other “emergency” needs. 

The city’s business facade improvement program also got a $150,000 funding boost, and removed requirements for business-owners to put up matching funds for the facility. 

Lastly, the city also announced $100,000 in funding for local nonprofits, such as the College Park Food Bank and Meals on Wheels. 

Editor’s note: Route 1 Reporter is – normally – a subscriber-supported local news website. Due to the state of emergency, articles about the coronavirus pandemic will be available for free. If you like the reporting, please support Route 1 Reporter on Patreon.

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