November 20, 2020

Franklin County Awards COVID-19 Relief Grants

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to strain businesses and community services across Franklin County. On May 29, 2020, Governor Wolf signed Act 24 of 2020 providing $625 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to Pennsylvania counties by means of block grants, administered through the  Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).  Under this legislation, Franklin County received $14 million to help address the impacts and critical needs created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Grant distribution is occurring as quickly and as efficiently as possible. There is a great need to get these funds back into the community,” said Commissioner Chairman Dave Keller.

CARES funding guidelines allow for grants to support economic development organizations, small businesses, tourism businesses, nonprofit agencies, behavioral health and substance use disorder treatment, and broadband internet deployment.

The County partnered with the Franklin County Area Development Corporation (FCADC) and Franklin Forward to help administer the grant applications and funding process for the COVID-19 Relief small business grants and the nonprofit grants, respectively. The grants are intended to help Franklin County small businesses and nonprofits sustain through, or reopen after, the COVID-19 pandemic.

Teams of county, community agency, and legal representatives reviewed applications and provided recommendations to the Board of Commissioners.


COVID-19 relief dashboard with statistics

Above image: COVID-19 Relief Grants Dashboard

Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant

To be eligible for funding, small businesses had to be located in Franklin County, have fewer than 100 employees, and have been in business on or prior to May 1, 2019. Of 177 applications for the small business COVID-19 recovery grant, 155 were eligible and recommended for funding. Awards ranged from up to $5,000 to up to $72,500 and were given to businesses in hospitality, retail, manufacturing, and agriculture. The total amount of the small business awards is $5.6 million.

Nonprofit COVID-19 Relief Grant

Nonprofits eligible for funding had to be incorporated as a 501 (c) 3 or 501 (c) 19, operating on or prior to May 1, 2019, as well as have been open at the time of application or have had a clear plan to re-open. Of 50 applications, 46 were eligible and 44 were recommended for funding. Those not recommended either already had CARES Act or other related funding, or did not respond to further inquiry. Award amounts ranged from up to $1,700 to $175,000 and totalled $1.12 million.

Top 10 Supported Industries bar graph

Above image: Nonprofit organizations in a variety of industries were awarded COVID-19 Relief grants.

Distribution of grant funds is underway and awards are going out to businesses and nonprofit agencies across the county. To learn more about the COVID-19 Relief Grants and to view information dashboards, including maps, visit

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