Hope your final days of summer are going well. Before we get to today’s official notes, I want to send best wishes for the new school year to all our local students and staff. Also, please be extra careful out on the roads and keep an eye out for school buses.
As for state business, I would like to share some information on a few programs that might be of interest to you, including COVID-19 relief grants for local businesses, tax breaks for educational expenses and a childcare economic development grant program. Here is a rundown of those:
Main Street business grants
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development will begin accepting applications for the Main Street COVID Relief Grants Program on Sept. 20. This program was approved by the Legislature earlier this year.
A total of $64,200,000 is available in grants for Minnesota businesses that can demonstrate financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Funding will be distributed in a 50/50 split between the Twin Cities metro area and Greater Minnesota.
Successful applicants will receive a grant amount between $10,000 and $25,000 based on the number of full-time equivalent employees on staff. Additional eligibility requirements and application information can be found at DEED’s Main Street COVID Relief Grants Program page. Also, a pair of webinars have been scheduled to discuss this program in more detail. You can join those at the following links:
Tax breaks for education expenses
School is back in session, and I want to share some information regarding state tax tools that help people save on expenses related to education. Most school supplies qualify for the credit or subtraction, including writing utensils, textbooks, and musical instrument rentals. To qualify for either program, you must:
Complete details regarding the education tax credit and subtraction can be found on the Department of Revenue’s website.
Childcare economic development grant application
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development recently launched a latest round of Childcare Economic Development Grants. These grants authorize $5 million over the next two years for grants to support quality childcare providers and enhance economic development across Minnesota. A total of $2.5 million will be available in this first round, followed by a second round of funding before June of 2022.
DEED is seeking proposals from local governments and/or nonprofits with experience in the operations, financing, advocacy, or advancement of the delivery of childcare services. Qualified parties may request up to $300,000 in state funds for this program.
The deadline to apply is 4 p.m. Sept. 30 and proposals can be submitted by emailing MNSPB.DEED@state.mn.us. Questions also can be emailed to that address by 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18. DEED will post responses to frequently asked questions on DEED’s Competitive Grants and Contracts page. Award recipients will be notified in October.
Until next time, have a good week and, as always, your input is welcome.