About 50 area residents attended a presentation Sept. 22 at the De Smet Event & Wellness Center to learn more about a grant program that will award $400 million in relief funds to small businesses in the state that have lost revenue because of COVID-19. Another handful of people attended via Zoom.
Gov. Kristi Noem proposed on Sept. 9 that the state make $400 million in federal coronavirus relief funds available to businesses in the state. This money will be taken from $1.25 billion the state is to receive from federal coronavirus relief funds. Noem has called a special legislative session Oct. 5 for lawmakers to tweak the details and approve a final version of the program.
The presentation, hosted by the De Smet and Huron Economic Development Corporations, was held to inform business owners about grants they may be eligible for. District 22 House Representatives Roger Chase and Lynn Schneider and District 22 Senator Jim White were on hand to answer questions and get feedback from the audience before the upcoming special session. District 22 encompasses all of Kingsbury and Beadle Counties.
De Smet Economic Development Director Rita Anderson welcomed the attendees and introduced the speakers, including David McGirr, President/CEO of the Huron Economic Development Corporation, who explained how the grants will work.
McGirr said qualifying businesses could be granted up to $100,000 each, but that amounts received will depend on the number of applicants and available funds. Senator White emphasized that the following guidelines have been set, but these are subject to change during the upcoming legislative session.
Eligible businesses must be:
A going concern is a business that is assumed will meet its financial obligations when due. It functions without the threat of liquidation for the foreseeable future, which is usually regarded as at least the next 12 months or the specified accounting period. One of the things this requirement specifies is that businesses that closed because of COVID-19 or plan to close in the foreseeable future are not eligible.
Applications are proposed to open Oct. 12 and close on Oct. 23. Application forms will be available online after Oct. 5. A handout detailing the proposal and how to calculate reduction in business is available now at the De Smet Development Corporation Office and at De Smet City Hall at www.desmetsd.com and www.greaterhuron.com, along with a video of the presentation. For questions, call Rita Anderson at (605) 203-0216.
People who plan to apply were encouraged to set up meetings with their bankers or accountants if they need assistance with the filing process, because there is a short timeframe to apply, and it is expected these resources will be busy during the enrollment time.