Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group (FSAG) has announced an initial $50 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funds for the new Supplemental Employer Recovery Grant (SERG) program to provide additional relief to small businesses suffering during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and supporting them through these difficult times has been one of the core missions of the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group,” Lee said. “The SERG program will provide further relief to small businesses, especially those who may not have been able to access previous federal and state relief funds.”

Small business owners and non-profit organizations can apply to receive reimbursement for eligible direct expenses or costs incurred as a result of business interruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program’s application window opened Oct. 7 and remain open until Dec. 29 or until all funds are depleted. Interested parties should note:

• Funds will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis;

• Awards are capped at $30,000. Businesses located in low to moderate income (“LMI”) census tracts, opportunity zones or promise zones will receive an additional $500 added to the maximum allowable expenses;

• 10% of all funds distributed under this program will be reserved for eligible diversity business enterprises, classified as minority business enterprises, women business enterprises or service-disabled veteran business enterprises and enterprises owned by disabled persons.

The period for reimbursable expenses is May 1, 2020, through Aug. 31, 2020. Eligible expenses and business interruption costs include but are not limited to:

• Costs to create social distancing measures

• Purchasing personal protective equipment for employees or customers

• Contactless equipment

• Payroll expenses

• Mortgage interest

The SERG program follows the previously allocated $300 million for more than 40,000 qualifying businesses under the Tennessee Business Relief Program.

To apply and learn more about what is eligible for reimbursement, visit https://tncaresact.tn.gov/SERG

For application assistance, call 1-833-740-1438 or e-mail support@TNCARE SACT.com

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