Small businesses: Apply for $$$ by Friday

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Among the 84 small businesses and projects helped by the Small Business Program: The Bottle Shop, a boutique retail wine and sundries shop that opened just a few days ago on Pike Street.

City offering help renovating exteriors, paying startups’ rent 

COVINGTON, Ky. – Friday is the deadline to apply for the latest round of City funding offered through two popular incentive programs that have helped 84 small businesses and projects since 2017.
 
Covington hopes to award about $35,000 during this round under a competitive application process, which offers up to $500 a month for first-year rent or a forgivable loan of up to $6,000 to match investment dollar-for-dollar in façade improvements to a commercial building.
 
This is the first of four rounds of funding for the 2021-2022 fiscal year under what the City calls its Small Business Program.
 
The program is offered citywide.
 
“We crafted this program to support the needs of small businesses that are not traditionally supported and to land new, unique users to Covington,” said Ross Patten, the City’s Assistant Economic Development Director. “For small businesses and property owners, a $6,000 incentive can make a huge difference to their bottom line. I strongly encourage people to finish their applications and get them to me.”
 
Time is tight, so businesses that are interested in applying for either the façade or rent programs should contact Patten as soon as possible at (859) 292-2144 or rpatten@covingtonky.gov. The applications themselves and information about the programs can be found on the City’s website, HERE.
 
Patten said the Small Business Program is so successful that he often receives inquiries from other local governments seeking details about its implementation so they can emulate it. Since 2017, the program in Covington has:
  • Financially supported 84 businesses or projects.
  • Leveraged almost $3.7 million of private investment, representing over $8 of private investment for every $1 of public funding.
  • Created or retained 334 jobs.
  • Filled or improved more than 83,000 square feet of vacant commercial space.
  • Supported 28 minority-, women-, or veteran-owned businesses.
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