By Snohomish County Government | Press Release
Editor’s Note: Added business sector breakdown and Snohomish County council member statements.
Everett, Wash., July 14, 2020 – Today, Snohomish County announced grant awards for the second round of the Relief Recovery and Resiliency (R3) grant program. The R3 grant program is part of the county’s plan to use federal CARES Act resources to support those businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our businesses and their workers need our support,” said Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers. “We will continue to look for opportunities to bolster our economic recovery and be strong advocates for more federal funding. We know how important these funds are for people’s livelihoods and that not everyone who needs a grant has gotten one. We are pushing to do even more to bridge the gaps in our community.”
“We are eager to get these federal funds into the hands of our small business owners and their employees,” said Snohomish County Council Chair Nate Nehring. “Too many people across Snohomish County are hurting, and we will continue to find ways to support them. We will do what we can until the pandemic is behind us.”
In his statement to the Lynnwood Times, Councilman Sam Low shared, “As a former business owner, I am happy and thankful for each of the more than 150 businesses in District 5 who received an R3 grant. However, my heart continues to hurt for those small businesses and families who are still struggling and trying to make ends meet.”
Low continued, “I am committed to finding more ways and opportunities to help those who continue to struggle due to the restrictions placed on them outside of their control.”
“As part of the economic recovery effort for Snohomish County, I intentionally reached out to our small businesses, sole proprietors, and frontline workers to get a better understanding of our community and business needs,” said Councilwoman Megan Dunn. “Our County is working to balance our local economy, public health and community needs, and this grant program is critical to our economic recovery and pandemic response.”
Relief Recovery and Resiliency (R3) Grants
The R3 grant program is a key part of the relief and recovery action Snohomish County is taking to help small businesses impacted by the pandemic. Businesses applying for grants under this program must:
- Be licensed to do business in the State of Washington.
- Be a business physically located in Snohomish County.
- Have 20 or fewer employees (including the business owner/worker).
- Be in operation for one or more years.
- Certify at least a 25% reduction in revenue attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Able to demonstrate that the business was a going concern before March 23, 2020.
Economic and unemployment data for Snohomish County provides insight about our hardest hit businesses. The focus of the R3 grant program is on small businesses that are critical to supporting our community’s broad-based recovery. Priority has been given to dining, retail, hospitality, arts and entertainment, and service sector establishments.
Funding is intended to support business sustainability through the COVID-19 public health emergency. The funds received must be used to cover expenses that have not been previously accounted for and are incurred between March 1, 2020 and November 30, 2020.
Snohomish County received 509 R3 applications totaling over $9 million in requests in the second round, and the selection committee had $7.087 million in grant funds to award. There were also 1,619 applications from round one that were considered in round two, representing a total request of nearly $30 million.
Four hundred and thirty-seven (437) small businesses received awards in round two. The application period for R3 grants opened on June 12, 2020 and closed on June 26, 2020. After the deadline, all applications were reviewed and proposed awardees selected
In the first round, Snohomish County received 2,194 R3 applications totaling over $41 million in requests, and the selection committee had $5.68 million in grant funds to award. Three hundred and seven (307) small businesses received awards.
The application period for R3 grants opened on May 20, 2020 and closed on June 4, 2020. After the deadline, all applications were reviewed and proposed awardees selected. Recipients will have to agree to a contract in order to receive funds. Workforce Snohomish will be managing the contracts and administering funds, once contracts are signed.
The allocation of the first round of R3 relief grants totaling $5.68 million is as follows:
- District 1 – $1,110,000
- District 2 – $1,115,000
- District 3 – $1,425,000
- District 4 – $965,000
- District 5 – $1,065,000
The main business sectors awarded the first round of R3 funds are the following:
- Agriculture – $25,000
- Arts/Entertainment- $300,000
- Childcare – $110,000
- Construction – $320,000
- Health Services – $790,000
- Manufacturing – $235,000
- Restaurant/Dining – $1,240,000
- Retail/Hospitality – $1,055,000
- Salon/Spa – $940,000
- Other Services – $665,000
In the second round of R3 awards, Workforce Snohomish allocated $7.087 million to the following districts:
- District 1 – $1,280,000
- District 2 – $1,475,000
- District 3 – $1,577,710
- District 4 – $1,215,000
- District 5 – $1,540,000
A total of 744 small businesses have received awards in rounds one and two. Recipients will have to agree to a contract in order to receive funds. Workforce Snohomish will be managing the contracts and administering funds, once contracts are signed.
R3 grant applications that were not selected for an award in the first or second rounds will be retained for any additional rounds, if funding is identified.
This grant program was part of the package of COVID-19 responses proposed by Executive Somers, approved by the County Council, and funded by CARES Act resources. That package includes: $55 million for Public Health and Emergency response activities, including PPE; $37 million for economic stabilization; $25 million for human/social services and housing; $6 million for essential government services; and $20 million for emergency contingencies.
This grant program adds to the actions Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers has implemented to support businesses and workers, including:
- Small business and aerospace grant programs
- A workforce grant program to support aerospace workers and businesses
- Launch of a Blue Ribbon Economic and Workforce Recovery Taskforce and District Advisory Groups, and the release of their findings and recommendations
- Creation of the Office of Economic Recovery and Resiliency
- Establishment of a Response Fund with the Community Foundation of Snohomish County and local partners
- Extension of a Deadline for Individual Property Taxpayers with County Treasurer Brian Sullivan
The County anticipates announcing a relief program for Snohomish County private, non-profit organizations later this summer.