The Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) recently approved a set of revisions to three business grant programs, to better assist small businesses and downtown office users as they create new jobs and invest in commercial spaces.
The CRA board approved changes to the reimbursement rate and pay schedule for the Site Development Assistance Program, which helps offset the cost of a variety of interior and exterior commercial property improvements. The first $10,000 of eligible project costs for projects in target areas, including CRA District Sub-Areas in The Set and Osceola Park, may be reimbursed at a rate of 100%. Eligible costs beyond that amount would be reimbursed at the standard rate of 40%.
Additionally, grantees throughout the CRA District may now access approved grant funding more quickly. Grantees may request reimbursement payments in installments, including up to two reimbursements for completed improvements while construction is still underway.
The Paint-Up & Signage Program, which helps businesses with the cost of exterior paint and signage projects, was modified to allow the CRA to pay vendors directly, as opposed to issuing reimbursement payments to grantees. The CRA will pay 50% of eligible costs, up to a maximum grant award of $5,000.
Eligibility for the Site Development Assistance, Paint-Up & Signage and Business Development Assistance programs has also been extended to qualified office users in the downtown core, inclusive of Sub-Areas #1 and #2 of the CRA District. The Business Development Assistance Program offers a partial monthly rent subsidy to new businesses that are starting up or relocating to Delray Beach and creating new jobs.
“These changes were designed to make the CRA’s existing grant programs more practical, especially for small businesses in our priority areas,” said Economic Development Manager Elizabeth Burrows. “More practical tools ultimately make for more effective solutions.”
To learn more about CRA business grants, potential applicants are encouraged to attend a Pre-Application Grants Workshop, offered monthly at the Greater Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce (140 NE 1st Street). The next two workshops are scheduled for August 21 and September 11, 2017 from 3:00-4:30 p.m. To register or request additional information, call the CRA office at (561) 276-8640 or visit delraycra.org/upcoming-grant-workshops/.
Delray Beach Office of Economic Development
The Delray Beach Office of Economic Development (OED) is a collaborative office, jointly funded by the City of Delray Beach and the Delray Beach CRA. Services to relocating, expanding and start-up businesses include site selection and relocation assistance; business grants and incentives; connections to community resources; small business and entrepreneurial support; workforce development; and project management. OED’s mission is to drive and inspire the growth of a diverse, vibrant, entrepreneurial economy for all.