As the economy struggles in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, many small businesses are feeling the effects the most. A new Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation program was created to assist small businesses and micro-enterprises in Wisconsin during these difficult times.

The Small Business 20/20 program provides funds to Wisconsin-based community development financial institutions to make grants to existing loan clients. Small businesses with 20 or fewer employees may be granted up to $20,000 to be used for two months of payroll, rent expenses and covering paid sick leave related to COVID-19. These small businesses must also make more than zero dollars, but less than $2 million in annual revenue.

The $5 million grant program will help relieve some businesses’ short-term cash flow challenges while protecting jobs and public health in Wisconsin, according to the program website.

WEDC is working with 23 of the state’s CDFIs to deploy the grants in a quick and direct manner, according to the Pierce County Economic Development Corporation.

WEDC plans to identify participating CDFIs within the next two weeks, according to the email.

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