Copperas Cove EDC proposes grant aid for local small businesses
By LYNETTE SOWELL
Help for some Copperas Cove businesses impacted by the economic hardships due to COVID-19 could be on the way in the form of local grants.
The Copperas Cove Economic Development Corporation is proposing a grant program, called CCEDC Cares for Community Businesses, and is planning to earmark $110,000 for the endeavor.
The CCEDC board will hold a meeting on Friday, April 24, at 4 p.m. to hear a presentation by CCEDC executive director Jonas Titas, during which they will discuss the terms of the plan.
Businesses which qualify may apply to receive grants in the amount of $1,000, $3,000, or $5,000. Businesses must be located within the city limits of the City of Copperas Cove and have been in business as of Jan. 1, 2020.
Retail businesses with more than 50 employees are not eligible. Also, if a business continued to operate during the stay at home order, other than providing curbside service, they are not eligible for the program. Home-based businesses are not eligible, nor are national chains and franchises associated with the parent company. The online application period would open on Thursday, April 30, at 3 p.m. and recipients will be selected by the CCEDC committee and have 14 business days to fulfill the requirements.
The grant funding also comes with a marketing component, in which the businesses receiving grants must fulfill two out of four advertising options, which include paid social media posts, purchasing a poster, purchasing signage, or purchase an approved ad from a local publication that is mailed to Copperas Cove residents.
The public may participate in Friday’s meeting by calling toll-free (888) 475-4499, then entering the meeting ID 986 602 9818.
Comments will be permitted as provided by the agenda and as permitted by the presiding officer during the meeting. Written questions or comments may be submitted up to two hours before the meeting via email to Diane Drussell, Assistant Director at email@example.com.
A recording of the telephonic meeting will be made and will be available to the public in accordance with the Texas Public Information Act upon request.
If the proposed CCEDC Cares for Community Businesses program passes the CCEDC board on Friday, the next step would be a vote by the Copperas Cove city council.
Other economic development corporations in Texas have enacted similar programs, such as the Lampasas Economic Development Corporation, which is offering grants. The LEDC’s maximum grant amount is $3,000, which can be used by brick-and-mortar small businesses within that city.
Also, the city of Burleson’s Economic Development Corporation, which is a Type 4A EDC such as the Copperas Cove EDC, has a program for its businesses, called Operation Together. Burleson’s EDC has allocated $500,000 for businesses that agree to help promote the economic development corporation and the city, and also use the funds to advertise their products and services.
The CCEDC is funded by 3/8-cent of Copperas Cove sales tax.