In 2020 Congress passed the CARES Act that allocated funds for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which are forgivable loans. But a substantial number of small businesses were not able to apply for the PPP before the program’s funds were depleted. Because of this, many Maplewood small businesses missed an opportunity for a lifeline in the form of federal funding during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. If elected mayor, I will work to ensure that does not happen again.
Recently the Senate passed the American Rescue Plan Act. When this legislation is enacted, it will consist of several provisions for small businesses which include PPP and grants for small businesses and not-for-profits. Maplewood’s small businesses and nonprofit organizations are an integral part of Maplewood and I want to help to ensure your doors remain open in our community. To that end, if elected, I will work with the City Manager, our Department of Community Development, and the City Attorney to establish the Maplewood Small Business Hub. I will also partner with the Mid-County Chamber of Commerce to assist in their continued support of Maplewood businesses.
This hub would serve only Maplewood small businesses and not-for-profits located in Maplewood by providing free grant writing services and a series of grant writing workshops. The purpose of these free grant writing services is to help your business understand what it needs to apply for federal grants that will come from the American Rescue Plan Act once it becomes law. I have secured JFY Consulting (jfyconsulting.com), a grant writing consulting firm, to provide a series of virtual workshops that will address how and when to apply for the various federal grants of the Act. These workshops will be free for Maplewood small businesses and no charge to the City of Maplewood. I have also secured a grant writer, who is a Maplewood resident, to assist Maplewood small businesses with their grant applications. This grant writer is also providing her time to Maplewood small businesses and nonprofits pro bono.
I am solutions based in my approach to helping you and focused on your success. Should I be elected mayor, I will begin to work for you as soon as possible.
Knapper for Maplewood