MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) – Small businesses in the Myrtle Beach area meeting economic hardship during COVID-19 have a better chance at bouncing back now.

Financial help from The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is waiting to be claimed by local small businesses in the area. The money includes $600,000 to support small businesses to retain low- to moderate-income household employee positions.

“The goal of this program from a federal funding standpoint is twofold. It’s to help local communities stabilize their economy but also to ensure that low to moderate-income residents can maintain their jobs and maintain their housing,” said Courtney Frappaolo, Horry County’s Community Development and Block Grants Director.

The needs of small businesses have evolved through the pandemic. In the beginning, businesses lacked equipment and PPE. Nine months later, what’s a stake has become greater.

The priority for small businesses now is retaining jobs, which is what this money will help support.

If you apply and receive a portion of the funding, the money can go towards rent, payroll, or working capital. Applications that qualify can receive anywhere from $1,000 to $25,000. Not only does the business financially gain, but the incentive also allows their team to grow.

Businesses have to keep or create at least one low to a moderate-income household employee.

“We will be able to serve probably less than 50 businesses with our first tranche of funds. Our second tranche will be teed up for more businesses. We are hoping that Congress can enact some more assistance that we can then provide to businesses so this can be a continued program until it’s no longer needed,” Frappaolo said.

Small business applicant eligibility requirements:

  • 25 or fewer full-time employees
  • Located in the city or unincorporated part of Horry County
  • Be a for-profit business
  • Have less than $5 million in gross revenues for the last 12 months
  • Ability to demonstrate economic hardship caused by COVID-19

The application is open now through January 29th. Click here for the application.