By Monmouth County Freeholder Director Tom Arnone
I hope everyone took advantage of the beautiful weather this weekend and visited our beaches and restaurants in Monmouth County!
With the holiday weekend approaching, I would like to remind everyone to remain diligent in adhering to the social distancing and safety guidelines implemented by the State.
Our restaurants and retailers – especially seasonal – depend on strong summer weekends to keep their staff employed and businesses open. It’s more important now than ever to support them while remaining safe.
While I am happy to see more businesses reopen this week, they are still badly hurting. Our small business community has taken a drastic hit and to not allow them to reopen to a full capacity at this time is forcing business owners to make the tough decision on whether or not they need to close for good.
To try to assist our small business community, last week my fellow Freeholders and I announced that the County will allocate $10 million from the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act to supplement the Community Development Block Grant – Coronavirus (CDBG-CV).The funding will be utilized to provide grants of up to $10,000 to businesses with up to 50 employees.
My fellow Freeholders and I realized that the $1.59 million from the Community Development Block Grant for COVID would not provide sufficient funds to reach all small businesses in the County due to restrictions and guidelines put in place by the federal government and HUD. The Board unanimously passed the resolution to share supplemental funds from the CARES Act to the Monmouth County small businesses and nonprofits to provide them with relief during this pandemic.
Throughout this pandemic in Monmouth County, countless residents have filed for unemployment and small businesses have shut their doors. These grant dollars will help support and recover our County economy as we continue to curb COVID-19 in the United States.
We are working diligently to finalize all the details and the application process and anticipate having the details confirmed by July 15th. Any small business owner or non-profit who reaches out to the County will be contacted directly when more information is available.
More information on the CDBG-CV will be made available in the coming weeks on www.visitmonmouth.com.
As always, it is a pleasure to serve as Freeholder Director. I’ll continue to advocate on behalf of residents and businesses!