Fairbanks North Star Borough announces three CARES Act programs for businesses, nonprofits

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska. (KTVF) On Thursday June 18, the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly approved the distribution of $18.5 million of CARES Act funding from the state to businesses and nonprofits through three programs.

(Alex Bengel, KTVF)

“The three programs that have been approved by the assembly really came after looking at what other communities have done throughout the United States, looking at the requirements of the CARES Act program... and then looking at the individual need we see within the community, and how we can best administer these grants to meet those businesses needs and the overall community need,” said Mayor Bryce Ward.

The first program is the Business Interruption Program where businesses can apply for up to $15,000 to cover costs incurred from loss of revenues or increased expenditures because of the pandemic. There are $10 million available for this program.

The second program a Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Grant to reimburse businesses and nonprofits for up to $1,500 for the costs of PPE for staff or patrons. There are $1.5 million in that program.

The third program is the Health Care Impact Grant to provide relief and assistance to health care businesses and nonprofits adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. That program contains $7 million.

Mayor Ward says the funding from the state will provide help and assistance to businesses and nonprofits in the borough who need it.

"We do have a lot of work and a lot of ground to make up because of the pandemic. It's been a huge impact to our economy, huge impact to our work force, so I don't want to downplay the impact the CARES Act funding will have -- but we have a lot of work left to do," said Ward.

Ward says they are currently seeking a third party contractor to help with marketing, administering and processing applications for the grants.

“The idea is that if we can get that contractor on board quickly after our procurement deadline, we would be able to start taking applications August 1st,” said Ward.

Ward says they are still setting up the programs before they go live. He encourages residents who have a business they think is eligible to sign up on the website for more information which can be found on the borough’s website.

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