COVID-19 financial relief available to Canby businesses, citizens
Funds are now available for Canby businesses and citizens in need of financial relief because of COVID-19 impacts.
The Canby City Council on Nov. 4 passed a resolution to disburse CARES Act funding to the tune of $300,000 — half for local businesses in the form of grants and half to benefit citizens through the Adult Center and the Canby Center.
City staff and the council acted quickly as funding must be disbursed by Dec. 30, and any funds not disbursed by that time must be returned.
Grant applications open for businesses
Small businesses in Canby can now apply for a grant up to $10,000 to recoup dollars lost because of the COVID-19 crisis, according to Economic Development Director Jamie Stickel.
Businesses are eligible if they have fewer than 25 full-time equivalent staff members, if they are within Canby city limits and if they have an active Canby business license which was also active on March 1, 2020. Businesses must also be able to demonstrate a one-month decline in sales greater than 10% in the months of March through October compared to January and February or compared to the same time-period the year before.
Businesses that have between one and five full-time equivalents can apply for grants starting at $1,000 and up to $2,000 with verification of expenses. Businesses with six to 10 FTE can apply for $2,000 to $4,000; businesses with 11 to 15 FTE can apply for $3,000 to $6,000; businesses with 16 to 20 FTE can apply for $4,000 to $8,000; and businesses with 20 to 25 FTE can apply for $5,000 to $10,000.
Preference will be given to businesses that were shut down due to the governor's orders or that shut down voluntarily during the height of the pandemic. Preference will also be given to those businesses that have been unable to access other assistance.
Funds to benefit Canby citizens
The other half of the funding will be distributed to two local nonprofits: the Canby Adult Center and the Canby Center.
Because of the pandemic, the Canby Adult Center had to adjust the food packaging for its Meals on Wheels program and implemented a new program to provide extra meals for homebound adults. Approximately $8,000 to $10,000 of the CARES Act funding will go to the Adult Center to meet these needs, according to city Finance Director Julie Blums.
"It is definitely worthwhile and helpful to our senior population," Blums said.
The majority of the funding will go to the Canby Center for citizens who need assistance with rent or utilities due to impacts of the COVID-19 crisis.
For information or to contact the center, visit thecanbycenter.org or call 503-266-2920.
"Isn't it great that we have something like the Canby Center and (its director) Ray Keen that is just above reproach," Councilor Greg Parker said, "that if we need a nonprofit to go to to help us partner, that we have one here?"
One other nonprofit contacted the city looking for assistance, but the city had to get creative to meet the need. The Kiwanis Club is holding its annual food and toy drive but is not collecting food items this year because of the pandemic. Instead, they are purchasing grocery gift cards, which will cost about $30,000.
"We really searched through the CARES Act rules to try to find a way to make their need fit, and it does not," Blums said.
Instead, Blums came up with an idea to move funds around and offer Kiwanis $15,000. Blums said that some city personnel costs qualify for reimbursement through the CARES Act, which frees up some city dollars.
The city council agreed unanimously to provide the gift to Kiwanis.
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.