Application process for CARES Act small business grant programs begins Monday

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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — Governor McMaster launched a minority small business grant program to provide relief to local businesses during the pandemic.

Small businesses and nonprofits will benefit from a $65 million aid package.

A Grand Strand family business, SetGo Movers, said keeping clients and his business safe during the pandemic brings challenges. With a short staff and heavier risk, small businesses need support.

The owner of SetGo Movers, Walter Robinson, was a mailman in Carolina Forest for four years. He comes from a family of entrepreneurs, so the desire to start a small business was in his blood.

“I saw an opening for opening a business and helping my community,” Robinson said.

In his old job, Robinson saw how much the Grand Strand was growing. He also saw a business opportunity as young people and retired folks needed a helping hand moving.

That’s what sparked Robinson’s small business SetGo Movers.

“We get calls just to move a big safe from this room to upstairs or something like that,” Robinson said. Whether moving large objects or moving someone into a new home, Robinson said he and his teamwork to get the job done as fast as possible.

“A lot of the COVID restrictions add time to make sure everything is done right,” Robinson said.

Small businesses, such as SetGo Movers, may qualify for a $65 million package that includes the South Carolina Minority and Small Business Relief Grant Program. The relief funding was introduced by Governor McMaster through the CARES act funding.

The Minority and Small Business Relief Program will reimburse qualified businesses $2,500 to $25,000, and nonprofit programs up to $50,000.

Robinson says owning a contact business during the pandemic is challenging. He’s had to minimize staff inside the client’s homes, which means fewer hands on deck, taking longer to get the job done, and less opportunity to maximize clients.

Buying new resources like an extra moving truck? Robinson said that’s out of the picture for now. “A lot of these decisions have to be put on hold because I’m concerned about what’s next,” Robinson said. “With the fluctuation in the economy, we were worried about going into debt $90,000 not knowing what was ahead.”

These grants would reimburse small businesses and nonprofits for COVID-19 financial or operational impacts.

“What we do today in keeping the businesses going, education going, will pay dividends going forward, that’s why it’s important during this virus South Carolina never shut down like some of these other states did,” Governor Henry McMaster said in Rock Hill on Monday.

To qualify, businesses must employ 25 employees or less.

The online application process is open through Sunday, Nov. 1. Click here to find the application and eligibility requirements.

Gov. McMaster will promote the Minority and Small Business Relief Grant Program on the Grand Strand Friday, Oct. 23 at the International Culinary Institute, 920 Crabtree Lane in Myrtle Beach.

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