Small Business Relief Grant Program

The Program
Harford County will administer the COVID-19 Small Business Relief Grant Program, which will provide grants of $7,500 each to as many as 2,000 Harford County small businesses. The federal funds are provided locally through the CARES Act. Applicants should thoroughly review the eligibility and application process below and read the Frequently Asked Questions as applications will be processed on a first-come, first-served basis. Submission of an incomplete or inaccurate application may result in ineligibility for program funding. Harford County is committed to timely review and processing to ensure award recipients can apply this resource to the successful continuation of business operations.

Grant Terms 
Harford County will provide a $7,500 Relief Grant to an eligible small business that has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. If a business closes permanently before receiving the Small Business Relief Grant or, if a business is currently closed and does not open within 30 days of receiving this grant funding (or within 30 days of Governor’s announcement to lift closure orders), the Small Business Relief Grant funds must be returned to Harford County.

Use of Funds
The grant funds must be solely used for expenditures that occur between March 1, 2020 and December 30, 2020 and fall under one or more of the following categories:
  • Payroll;
  • Operating Expenses;
  • Business Lease or Rent;
  • Business telework equipment costs;
  • Inventory Acquisition (inventory needed to reopen or maintain open status);
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) purchase; and
  • Facility Readiness (social distancing preparedness, business modifications, etc.).
For further information, please visit the U.S. Treasury's April 22, 2020 Guidance for State, Territorial, Local, and Tribal Governments at https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/136/Coronavirus-Relief-Fund-Guidance-for-State-Territorial-Local-and-Tribal-Governments.pdf, or the U.S. Treasury's Frequently Asked Questions page at https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/136/Coronavirus-Relief-Fund-Frequently-Asked-Questions.pdf.

Eligibility
To qualify, a small business must:
  • Be a for-profit entity in good standing with the State of Maryland and Harford County and registered with the state, if required to do so by law as of March 9, 2020. Visit https://dat.maryland.gov/businesses/Pages/Internet-Certificate-of-Status.aspx to obtain certificate of status (Certificate of Good Standing may be provided via screenshot or printed from the webpage – no need to pay for official certificate);
  • Employ a minimum of two (2) full-time equivalent (FTE) employees who are not owners or part-owners, and a maximum of 50 FTE employees, defined at 30+ hours per week as of March 9, 2020; and
  • Certify that all business affiliates, subsidiaries, and parent company have a combined 2019 revenue of less than $5 million according to a 2019 tax return or end-of-year fiscal statement, required upon audit request.
  • ONLY APPLY TO ONE of the relief grant programs. Applications from businesses submitted for both grants will not be accepted.
Businesses who have received previous state or federal COVID support are still eligible to receive the Small Business Relief Grant from Harford County.

If you have carefully reviewed the program eligibility guidelines and determined your business does not qualify for this funding source, please visit
https://govstatus.egov.com/md-coronavirus-business to be redirected to the State of Maryland’s Coronavirus Information for Business website. The site is updated with new information frequently and features federal and state funding programs as well as the Maryland Unemployment Insurance portal.

Small Business Relief Application Button

>>Applications will be accepted beginning Tuesday, May 26 at 8 a.m.<<

Applications and required documents WILL NOT be accepted prior to 8 a.m. on May 26. Any attempted email submission before 8 a.m. on May 26 will not be held in a queue and must be resubmitted for consideration.

Required Supporting Documentation
  • Fully-completed application;
  • Certificate of Good Standing as of March 9, 2020. The business must be in good standing with the State of Maryland and Harford County, and registered with the state, if required to do so by law, as of March 9, 2020. (Certificate of Good Standing may be provided via screenshot or printed from the webpage – no need to pay for official certificate) https://dat.maryland.gov/businesses/Pages/Internet-Certificate-of-Status.aspx;
  • Payroll report as of March 9, 2020 OR W2 forms to support employment requirement;
  • Completed W9 form (click to download fillable form); and
  • Completed Direct Deposit Form (click to download fillable form). The Direct Deposit Form is also known as the Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Form.
  • Please note: The subject line of your email submission should read your business name.
COVID Application COVID W9 COVID Direct Deposit

We have created an application checklist for your convenience. This checklist does not have to be submitted with your application and is only for your reference. Click here.

To Apply 
Submit COMPLETE AND ACCURATE application with all required supporting documentation via email to: businessrelief@harfordcountymd.gov with your business name as the subject line. It is imperative that all applicants ensure the accuracy of their legal business name and address when completing and signing their application, W9, and Direct Deposit/EFT forms. Failure to submit a complete and accurate application may preclude you from being awarded grant funds from this program

Harford County will ONLY ACCEPT ELECTRONIC, TYPED SUBMISSIONS with the exception of legal INKED signatures at businessrelief@harfordcountymd.gov beginning Tuesday, May 26 at 8 a.m. Any attempted email submission before 8 a.m. on May 26 will not be held in a queue and must be resubmitted for consideration. All forms have been made fillable for convenience. No handwritten forms will be accepted. Please label your email subject line with the business legal name to ensure expediency. 


Review
Applicants will receive email notifications confirming receipt of their application. If an incomplete application is received, the applicant will be notified of the issue and asked to resubmit. However, the applicant’s place in the queue will not be saved.

If you need assistance with assessing your eligibility or compiling the needed documents for your application, we advise that you first consult with your financial or legal advisers.

To learn more, review the Frequently Asked Questions or email COVIDgrantquestions@harfordcountymd.gov.