The city of Bessemer has two on-going programs designed to assist small businesses and residents recover from the impacts of COVID-19.
EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE FOR RESIDENTS
The city of Bessemer and the Birmingham Urban League are partnering to provide emergency rental and utility assistance to Bessemer residents impacted by COVID-19.
The project is being sponsored with funds from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) special CARES Act allocation provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to the city.
Eligible households are able to receive up to $4500 for up to three months in emergency assistance under the program. Households must demonstrate that they have been impacted by COVID-19 through loss of employment or a reduction in income, among other eligibility requirements.
The program will be administered as long as funds are available. For more information, contact the Birmingham Urban League at 205-326-0162 or by visiting its website at https://birminghamul.org/. Application packets can also be picked up at Bessemer City Hall during normal business hours.
MICROENTERPRISE ASSISTANCE The city of Bessemer’s Economic and Community Development Department is providing assistance to microenterprises/entrepreneurs in the city impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The assistance programs are funded by the Community Development Block Grant CARES Act, or CDBG-CV, allocation provided to the city by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The program is being conducted in collaboration with Create Birmingham.
The City of Bessemer Small Business/Micro-enterprise Recovery and Resiliency program will provide technical assistance to eligible microenterprises in Bessemer that have experienced the detrimental impacts of COVID-19 with an aim of preparing, preventing and responding to the pandemic. Qualified owners will take part in a business consulting/mentoring program aimed at helping to stabilize their businesses for sustainability in a COVID-19/post COVID-19 environment.
Microenterprises, defined as businesses with five or fewer employees, who complete the program will be eligible to receive financial grant assistance of up to $5,000. Grant assistance can be used to provide capital to meet commercial lease or utility payment requirements or to purchase supplies and equipment needed to operate in a COVID-19 environment. To be eligible, microenterprises must have had a current business license with the city on March 17, 2020 and must document how their business has been impacted by the pandemic. Businesses who have received PPP loans from the federal government are not eligible for financial assistance under the program, but may be eligible for technical assistance.
A Town Hall informational meeting is scheduled for Thursday, August 19, 2021 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Bessemer City Hall for interested businesses.