On July 14, the Chula Vista City Council took action on three items to help small businesses in the City. The Council approved a $1.5 million small business grant program to reimburse the costs of business interruption caused by the required closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant program, Chula Vista CARES, is funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act.
Ninety-five percent of businesses in Chula Vista are small businesses and have been significantly impacted by the mandatory closures required during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Chula Vista CARES grant program was developed to provide economic relief to small businesses that were caused to remain closed for an extended duration and suffered business interruption due to the pandemic.
For-profit businesses located in a commercial or industrial space in Chula Vista with ten or fewer employees and who were required to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic are invited to apply for the grant program. Applications will be accepted online beginning Monday, July 20, at 7 a.m. – Friday, July 24, at 7 p.m. The maximum grant award per business will be $6,000. To ensure a fair and equitable distribution of grant funds, eligible businesses will be selected via lottery.
“Small businesses are the backbone of Chula Vista’s economy and are a critical part of our community’s economic recovery from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This program is one way of many we are working to show our business community how much we care about their recovery and longevity in Chula Vista,” said Mayor Mary Casillas Salas.
Complete eligibility requirements and additional details are available on the City’s Small Business Grant Program webpage, https://www.chulavistaca.gov/businesses/small-business-grant-program.
In addition, the Council approved an item to establish a free permit process to allow businesses along Third Avenue between E and G Streets to expand their operations into the public right-of-way. This will provide the businesses outdoor options using tables and canopies while having social distancing and queuing areas for sidewalk cafes and curb cafes. Businesses on Third Avenue would be able to create a larger outdoor dining experience as public health mandates currently have indoor dining closed. Other businesses in the City are establishing outdoor dining as well, such as in their parking lots. These businesses must coordinate with their landlords, property owners and other tenants of the property for access; maintain ADA accessibility to the businesses; coordinate with the County Department of Public Health if they are serving food in those outdoor areas; and, coordinate with the State department of Alcohol Beverage Control if they plan to serve alcohol in those outdoor areas.
Another item approved was an option for the temporary closure of Third Avenue on weekends from E to Center Streets through January 2021 to expand outdoor dining options. This will occur if the Third Avenue Village Association choose to implement this activity. For more information on other tools and resources for businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, visit www.chulavistaca.gov/businesses
Diane Howell, Public Information Specialist
Office of Communications
City of Chula Vista