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Clinton County businesses get COVID funding

LOCK HAVEN — Three more businesses in Clinton County have received funding through the COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program (CHIRP).

Those receiving a total of $70,000 in grants in the second phase of the program are Twilight Diner of Loganton, $30,000; Variety Buffet of Mill Hall, $15,000 and Stella A’s Bar and Grill in Lock Haven, $25,000.

With the second phase of the COVID relief grant program now ended, applications are being accepted for the third phase of the four-phase program open to 10 counties and directed to help hospitality businesses that are struggling from the pandemic’s impacts.

Seven businesses in Clinton County received funds from the first phase of the program — Lock Haven Motel, in Mill Hall, $25,000; Riverside Saloon in Lock Haven, $20,000; Main Street Grill in Lock Haven, $25,000; Quality Inn in Mill Hall, $35,000; Hampton Inn in Mill Hall, $30,000; Best Western in Lock Haven, $35,000, and Restless Oaks in McElhattan, $15,000.

Clinton County has $179,160 available for businesses in the third and fourth phases.

Deadline to submit applications in the third phase is May 16. June 15 is the deadline for phase four applications.

The grants have been entirely allocated in Centre, Lycoming, and Union counties, so the grant program for those counties is closed.

Following are the total grants and number of businesses awarded in the closed counties:

–Centre: A total of $1,809,992 to 86 businesses.

–Lycoming: A total of $1,264,226 to 56 businesses.

–Union: A total of $502,354 to 19 businesses.

Besides Clinton County, Columbia, Juniata, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, and Snyder counties remain eligible for grants.

For-profit hospitality businesses in the remaining open counties can apply until funds are spent or June 15 at the Community Giving Foundation’s website at https://csgiving.org/chirp/. Grants range from $5,000 to $50,000 to help alleviate 2020 revenue losses and pay for eligible operating expenses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

SEDA-COG Executive Director Kim Wheeler is urging hospitality businesses in the open counties to apply as soon as possible.

“These funds can go very quickly, so the grants may be gone before the June 15 deadline,” Wheeler said. “The grants are a direct lifeline to struggling hospitality businesses in our region, so please apply. If you have any questions, we are here to help.”

The grant program was created from the law Act 1 of 2021, which was passed Feb. 5, 2021. Statewide, it provides $145 million in funding assistance to the hospitality industry businesses adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible hospitality industry businesses must be for-profit businesses which include hotels, Bed and Breakfasts, restaurants, bars, taverns, catering companies, and food trucks. These businesses must fall within eligible industry codes which include the Accommodations subsector NAICS code (721) or Food Services and Drinking Places subsector (722) found here: https://www.naics.com/search/

Eligibility includes, but is not limited to, having fewer than 300 full-time employees; a net worth that does not exceed $15 million; a 25% reduction in gross receipts in 2020 compared to 2019; and be located within Clinton, Columbia, Juniata, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, or Snyder counties.

Priority will be given to businesses that did not already receive COVID relief funds; that were subject to closure following the disaster emergency declared by Gov. Tom Wolf on March 6, 2020; or had more than a 50% reduction in gross receipts from March 31, 2020 to Dec. 31, 2020 compared to the same time period in 2019. For a full listing of eligibility requirements and prioritization guidelines, visit www.csgiving.org/chirp

Those with questions may contact SEDA-COG Grants Manager Betsy Lockwood at 570-522-7265 or elockwood@seda-cog.org.

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