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City launches new small business economic support programs as part of COVID recovery

Councilman Robert Holden is among the Queens elected officials touting the city's new small business relief programs. (Courtesy of Holden's office)

The city is making more resources available to small businesses as part of its COVID-19 economic recovery campaign.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that $155 million of the funds will go directly to small businesses as grants and direct support through the Department of Small Business Services (SBS).

“As the City continues on its journey to recovery, it is critical that we make small businesses the central focus of our relief efforts,” SBS Commissioner Jonnel Doris said. “SBS will continue to strive for an inclusive recovery, ensuring all small businesses have the resources they need to get back on their feet.”

The programs will focus on low-moderate income businesses in the hardest hit communities and also help businesses in the arts, entertainment, recreation and food services, Doris added.

“The COVID-19 pandemic devastated small businesses in the arts, hospitality, and restaurant industries in New York City,” Assemblyman Davis Weprin said. “The launch of.small business economic support programs that provide millions of dollars in grants and loans will help our city in the recovery process. I applaud the Mayor’s office, the Office of Management and Budget and the NYC Department of Small Business Services for considering the needs of underrepresented groups and communities that were hurt the most by the COVID-19 pandemic when they created this program.”

For more information on the resources, visit the SBS website here.

“Small businesses are the backbone of a thriving Big Apple,” Councilman Paul Vallone said. “These programs accelerate our economic recovery from the pandemic as commercial corridors will benefit from these initiatives. I applaud the administration for administering and creating grants and loans to support New Yorkers.”

Councilman Robert Holden recently passed legislation that would help small business owner who have been struggling to keep their doors open.

“After a terrible year of being closed down, limited operation or being hit with draconian fines by city inspectors, our small businesses need all the help they can get,” Holden said. “These programs are a welcome step in the right direction toward recovery. Let’s continue to make city government more nurturing to small business owners in the wake of the pandemic and let’s shop locally.”

The Queens Chamber of Commerce, which represents more than 1,300 businesses and more than 125,000 Queens-based employees, endorsed the city’s small business economic support programs.

“The Queens Chamber of Commerce wholeheartedly supports and is grateful for the allocation of grants and loans that are being announced today by the administration,” Queens Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Grech said. “We have worked side by side with SBS Commissioner Jonel Doris and his team over the past year and look forward to continuing the work together. As we see the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel we look forward to having the resources we need to support our small business turnaround throughout Queens County.”

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