Daily News

Berkshire County COVID-19 Adaptation Fund to Benefit Small Businesses

PITTSFIELD — The Berkshire Regional Planning Commission (BRPC), in partnership with the office of state Sen. Adam Hinds, announced the availability of grant funds through the Berkshire County COVID-19 Adaptation Fund. Grants through this program will help businesses and organizations with up to 25 employees address expenses incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Applicants may use funds to cover a range of eligible expenses, including the purchase of PPE and other COVID adaptation supplies, as well as general business expenses such as rent, utilities, payroll, or insurance. BRPC will begin accepting applications online on Tuesday, Dec. 1.

This program will be available to both for-profit and nonprofit small businesses in Berkshire County, with maximum grant awards ranging from $5,000 to $15,000 depending on the number of employees. Preference will be given to applications from BIPOC (black, indigenous, and people of color) owned businesses.

“We understand that this current public-health and economic crisis has had an outsized impact on communities of color,” BRPC Executive Director Thomas Matuszko said. “We urge minority-owned businesses to apply for these funds and will look to issue awards as quickly as possible.”

BRPC is currently also helping to administer two regional Community Development Block Grant programs specific to for-profit businesses with five or fewer employees and low- to moderate-income owners.

The fund will also consider applications of up to $15,000 from established nonprofit organizations to support programs aimed at supporting individuals and groups of individuals impacted economically by COVID-19. Organizations seeking to apply for programmatic support should contact the BRPC directly by e-mailing Senior Planner Laura Brennan at [email protected].

Program details, including additional information about eligible expenses, are available on the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission website at www.berkshireplanning.org.

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