PROVIDENCE– Lt. Governor Dan McKee and the Rhode Island Small Business Coalition today sent letters to Governor Gina Raimondo and members of the Rhode Island General Assembly urging a collaborative effort to provide additional relief to small businesses before the state's CARES Act funds expire on December 30, 2020.
Requests include immediately allocating an additional $75M in CARES Act funds to the Restore RI grant program and adding another $75M if small businesses are ordered to shut down to stop the spread of the virus. These proposals follow outstanding requests from the Lt. Governor to simplify the Restore RI grant application, open the program to all small businesses regardless of industry, increase the minimum and maximum grant amounts and allow newly opened businesses to qualify.
"If we truly want to help small businesses in a meaningful way, we must quickly disburse remaining grant dollars and provide additional relief before the CARES Act funds expire on December 30," said Lt. Governor Dan McKee. "With new projections showing a significant reduction in the state budget deficit from $900M down to just $114M, allocating additional funds to small businesses is a reasonable and responsible thing to do."
“Our requests are simple — let’s provide some checks and balance when it comes to allocating what is left of the state's $1.25B in CARES Act funds, and let’s ensure that money is going to our small businesses sufficiently,” said Chris Parisi, Co-founder of the Rhode Island Small Business Coalition.