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April 4, 2023

Central Mass. small businesses eligible for $78M from new grant programs

Photo | Timothy Doyle Small businesses in Worcester's Main South neighborhood

Two new grant programs will make $78 million available to Massachusetts small business owners focusing on disadvantaged communities and movie theater owners. The money will be administered by the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corp., a Charlestown-based quasi-public entity, and made available by the Commonwealth’s fiscal 2023 economic development bill.

The Inclusive Recovery Grant Program will provide up to $75 million in funding through grants of up to $75,000 for businesses owned by people of color, women, veterans, immigrants, individuals with disabilities, or those who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community; businesses focusing on reaching markets predominantly made up of socially and economically disadvantaged and historically underrepresented groups; and other underserved markets, according to a Tuesday press release from MGCC.

The Independent Movie Theater Grant Program will provide a total of $3 million in funding to support movie theaters in Massachusetts. Eligible applicants can receive $15,000 for each of the first two screens they add at a particular location and $10,000 for each additional screen at a particular location.

“Small businesses are the backbone of our communities and our economy,” Massachusetts Gove. Maura Healey said in the press release. “Through these new grant programs, small businesses will have access to much-needed capital and resources to help them grow and thrive. We're grateful to our partners in the legislature for allocating these critical funds.”

Applications are now being accepted for both programs and are available here. The deadline to apply is April 28. Businesses interested in applying must fill out and submit the online application along with required documentation.

MGCC was created in 2010 with the merger of Massachusetts Community Development Finance Corp. and Economic Stabilization Trust Fund, according to the organization’s website. 

Its purpose is to help create and preserve jobs at Massachusetts small businesses, women and minority owned businesses, and to promote economic development in underserved, Gateway Cities and low- and moderate-income communities.  MGCC is a central state resource that offers working capital, loan guarantees, and targeted technical assistance to solve specific financial and operational problems for local businesses. MGCC works with traditional financial institutions to make challenging loans bankable, working with community development corporations and other non-profits to provide financing for job-producing projects and assisting a wide range of small businesses find the growth capital they require, according to the press release.

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