The next round of applications for the Access to Capital Program are available through August 30 at 5 p.m. The program has been expanded to include small businesses that have received funding from other sources such as PPP loans.
All small businesses that meet eligibility criteria are encouraged to apply – including those that have received funding from the Paycheck Protection Program, Golden LEAF, the City’s Microgrants Fund or other government sources. Previous applicants that received such funding are now eligible for review – so there is no need to reapply.
The Access to Capital program is a part of the City’s Open for Business Initiative and will distribute $30 million in federal CARES Act funding to small businesses headquartered within the city limits of Charlotte. Grants are either $10,000 or $25,000, depending on number of employees.
Foundation For The Carolinas serves as the City’s grantmaking partner for this effort.
- Business must be headquartered within the city limits of Charlotte, NC.
- Must have 25 or fewer employees.
- Business must have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Business must have been established before January 1, 2020.
- Gross sales for 2019 must be at least $30,000 and less than $2 million.
- Applicants cannot currently be engaged in bankruptcy proceedings.
- Nonprofit organizations, liquor stores, check cashing agencies, gun shops, pawn shops and adult entertainment businesses are ineligible for this program.
- Applicants may not apply for multiple businesses.
- All small businesses that meet eligibility criteria can apply – including those that have received funding from the Paycheck Protection Program, Golden LEAF, the City’s Micro Business Relief Fund or other government sources.
It is anticipated that the number of applications will exceed the available funding. Applicants are not guaranteed to receive a grant.
Each day, applications will be selected randomly by geography via software from the applicant pool to ensure dollars are distributed to businesses throughout the city and that applications received throughout the process have the opportunity for an award.
Any eligible applicant reviewed that meets the program criteria will receive an award.
HOW TO APPLY
Applications will be accepted through August 30 at 5 p.m. Applications will NOT be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. Instead, they will be reviewed based on random selection.
Businesses only need to apply ONCE for consideration in all current and upcoming phases. You may only apply for one business.
Applicants will be required to verify their business status.
In preparation to apply, please collect your IRS Form W-9 along with a total of three documents from Groups A and B (see below for example submissions).
Group A (at least one document MUST come from this list):
- IRS letter with business name and EIN or Social Security Number
- Bank statement with business name, dated within the past 3 months
- Utility bill with business name, dated within the past 3 months
- Mortgage statement with business name, dated within the past 3 months
- Sales and use tax report for Mecklenburg County from 2020
- Currently active certificate of insurance with business name
- Signed and executed lease agreement with Business Name
- Form 1040, Schedule C for Sole proprietor from 2018 or 2019
- Page 1 of Form 1065 for Partnerships/LLCs from 2018 or 2019
- Page 1 of Form 1120 for C Corporations from 2018 or 2019
- Page 1 of Form 1120S for S Corporations from 2018 or 2019
- Profit & Loss Statement from 2019
- Balance Sheet from 2019
- All applicants must upload and submit a signed IRS Form W-9 (Rev. October 2018). Please consider watching this quick tutorial on completing your W-9.
- Applicants with six or more employees must submit a 2019 IRS Form W-3.
- Applicants from industries not named in the March 26 Executive Order are required to download, complete and submit a notarized affidavit describing how the business was impacted by the pandemic.
Business X – which has three employees – might choose to submit a signed lease agreement, bank statement and utility bill, as well as their W9 as required. As a restaurant, they were included in the governor’s executive order and required no further documentation.
Alternately, Business Y – which has twenty employees – might choose to submit a mortgage statement, certificate of insurance and Form 1065 and, as well as the required W9 and their W3 (since they have more than six employees). This business, a small marketing firm, was NOT named in the governor’s executive order, so they also submitted the required, notarized affidavit describing how they were impacted by the pandemic.
Businesses with five or fewer employees are eligible for grant awards of $10,000, and those with six to 25 employees are eligible for grant awards of $25,000.
It is anticipated that the number of applications may exceed the available funding. Applicants are not guaranteed to receive a grant.
Awards will be distributed bi-monthly through mid-October.
Applicants only need to apply ONCE for consideration in all current and upcoming phases. Applicants may not apply for multiple businesses.
EQUITY AND ACCESS FOR FUNDING
The Access to Capital Small Business Recovery Program aims to provide funding rapidly, accessibly and equitably for Charlotte’s diverse small business community.
To ensure equity and access to all small businesses headquartered within the city limits of Charlotte, applications will be randomly selected each day for review via software. Any reviewed, eligible applicant that meets the criteria will receive an award based on their current number of employees.