Delco Strong: Rapid Response Grant Available to Assist Local Businesses Directly Affected by Recent Mitigation Efforts

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Released: December 18, 2020

Online application window opens on December 18

During its Dec. 16 public meeting, Delaware County Council unanimously voted to authorize CARES Act funding to further assist Delaware County businesses that have suffered loss from business interruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The fourth round of funding, Delco Strong: Rapid Response is modeled after the Delco Strong, Delco Strong 2, and Delco Strong 3 grant programs offered in May, July, and November which distributed over $16 million to 1,428 local businesses and 130 local non-profit organizations. Delco Strong: Rapid Response will offer funding to Delaware County businesses directly affected by the Governor’s recent updated mitigation efforts which are in effect from December 12-January 4. The new mitigation efforts prohibit indoor dining, limit indoor and outdoor gatherings, and prohibit entertainment venues and gyms and fitness centers from operating.

“Our restaurants, bars, catering businesses, and gyms and fitness centers are suffering tremendously, and the latest mitigation efforts, while necessary in response to the dramatic increase of COVID-19 cases will hurt them even more,” said Delaware County Councilwoman Elaine Schaefer. “Delco Strong: Rapid Response allows us to continue to support these specific businesses even further. We know this has been crippling to many businesses and we are doing everything we can to help them get back on their feet and help them stay open and keep their staff employed.”

Council’s vote authorizes $ 4 million in additional Delco Strong grants to be distributed to eligible small businesses. Business owners can apply online beginning on December 18.

Delco Strong: Rapid Response provides a sliding scale of assistance to the Full-Service Restaurant/Tavern/Catering industry based on 2019 gross revenue and for those that have modified operations to remain open at a limited capacity during the three-week mitigation. Businesses are eligible for up to $40,000.

Businesses such as entertainment centers, fitness centers, and instructional studios (dance, yoga martial arts) with annual revenue under $2.5 million are eligible for a flat subsidy of $5,000 to offset overhead for the three weeks.

Previous Delco Strong grantees are eligible and encouraged to apply and new applicants are also eligible to apply. Previous grantees are automatically qualified and do not need to resubmit their documentation, however they must submit a form stating they would like to apply for a grant.


Details on how to apply:

Applications for grants will be accepted from Friday, December 18 at 3:00p.m. through Tuesday, December 29 at 2:00p.m. Applications will not be accepted before or after that time.

Applications can be submitted online through the Delco Strong website: https://delcostrong.delcopa.org/

Applicants should visit the website for detailed program eligibility requirements and specific instructions regarding the application process, including hours of operation, deadlines, and information providing technical assistance for online applications.

This is not a first come first serve program.


The Delco Strong: Rapid Response program is administered by the Delaware County Economic Development Oversight Board. The program is funded entirely by a County Council grant in the amount of $4 million.

“Last week, when the most recent mitigation efforts were put into place, The Chamber immediately started hearing from local business owners. We knew we needed to do something to help,” said Delaware County Chamber President Trish McFarland. “The Chamber worked with Councilwoman Schaefer and Laura Goodrich Cairns, Deputy Director of the Commerce Center to act quickly to help those that need it the most. As we have since the start of this unprecedented shutdown of business- we continue to try to be responsive to our partners and assist how we are able.”

The first round of Delco Strong awarded 790 grants with over $7 million in funding to business owners. Eligible applicants were initially able to apply for up to $7,500. All grantees from Delco Strong 1 were offered “Delco Strong Boost” which awarded additional funds. 770 of the 790 grantees availed of or accepted Delco Strong Boost.

The second round of Delco Strong awarded $4.3 million in funding to 462 business owners and over $2 million to 73 nonprofit organizations. Businesses were eligible for up to $20,000. Non-profits were eligible for up to $50,000.

The third round of Delco Strong awarded $1.7 million in funding to 176 business owners and $769K to 30 nonprofit organizations.

Delaware County Council was the first county in the Southeast Region to offer COVID-19 response funding to non-profit organizations. The Foundation for Delaware County assisted in administering and evaluating the applicants for the program.

With the addition of Delco Strong: Rapid Response, over $20 million will be distributed directly to Delaware County businesses and non-profit organizations.

A detailed breakdown of the Delco Strong 1, 2 and 3 programs can be found here: https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/d520d12db64d408cb1b4723efcd6b1bc/

A list of recipients can be found here: https://www.delcopa.gov/pdf/GrantDistribution.pdf






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