NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — More than $100,000 is now available to small businesses in the Southeast community of Newport News.

“Kind of born out of necessity,” Priscilla Green with the city’s Department of Development said.

This week, the city launched the Micro-Enterprise Grant Program, a pilot program providing new funding opportunities to help businesses with five or fewer employees. The funding is set aside specifically for businesses within the geographic confines of the Southeast neighborhood of the city, or for business owners that live inside it.

“We notice so often that micro-enterprise businesses are not eligible for traditional grant and loan funding. So we wanted to fill that financial gap,” Green said.

According to Green, the city has access to $106,000 through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant Funds and the Department of Housing and Community Development FY22 Resurgence Grant Funds. Individual grants cannot exceed more than $3,500, allowing for dozens of businesses to apply for this funding opportunity. 

While the funding is allocated on a first come first serve basis, Green said that the city has yet to officially receive an application for the grants within the first week of the program’s launch. But numerous phone calls lead her to believe the applications are coming soon, once business owners get the requisite paperwork and information together. 

“[It’s for] businesses that just can’t find, or they have a little bit of money but they can’t get a loan because they don’t have an established business history. They’re findings it difficult to get financial assistance,” Green said.

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Some of the other eligibility requirements are:

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