Law & Order

California Accepting Applications for Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grants

By SEMA Washington, D.C., Staff

On December 30, 2020, California began accepting applications from small businesses and nonprofits seeking funds from the state’s $500 million Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program. The program is being administered by the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development. Applications are due January 13, 2021.

Grant recipients will be awarded between $5,000 and $25,000 based on annual revenue from the most recent tax return. Eligible recipients with annual revenue of $1,000 to $100,000 may be awarded $5,000. Those with revenue over $100,000, up to $1 million, may receive $15,000. If a recipient’s revenue is greater than $1 million, up to $2.5 million, it may receive $25,000. Funds may be used to cover eligible expenses incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as payroll expenses, working capital, costs associated with reopening, and COVID-19 mitigation expenses.

Applicants will be scored based on priority criteria, including geographic distribution based on California’s Blueprint for a Safe Economy and county status in the Regional Stay at Home Order; impact of COVID-19 on the applicant’s industry sector; and underserved small business groups served by the State supported network of small business centers.

A second round of grants will be announced at a later date and based on available funds. Governor Gavin Newsom has proposed adding $575 million to the program.

For more information on the program or to learn how to apply, please visit

For more information, contact Christian Robinson at