YoCo Strong

CARES Act Funding

The York County Commissioners held a July 15, 2020 public meeting to discuss discussed the allocation process for the $40.5 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding it received by way of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Utilizing the YoCo Strong Recovery Task Force report as guidance, the County will allocate funding across nine funding areas:

  • County Government
  • Local Government
  • Infrastructure / Broadband
  • Healthcare Services
  • Small Business & Restaurants
  • Non-Profit Organizations
  • Tourism & York Fair
  • County COVID PPE Supply Kits
  • Community Communication
  • Reserve
  • Administration

To deploy these funds in an expedited manner to meet the guidelines set forth by the federal government, and ensure compliance the County government has sought the assistance of the York County Economic Alliance to administer an application process for a select portion of this funding.

Similar to what has been done in sister counties, the York County government will employ the team at the YCEA to promote, administer, and ensure compliance of grant deployment. In Lancaster County, as an example, the Lancaster County Commissioners employed the assistance of the Economic Development Company of Lancaster and the Lancaster Chamber to assist its CARES Act funding deployment. The YCEA exists to provide administrative support for grant programming. As a certified economic development organization, it is reviewed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, it must follow and adhere with all guidelines and compliance obligations set forth by federal and state law.

Recovery Task Force Launched for the County of York

The York County Board of Commissioners announces a multi-faceted recovery strategy and subsequent task force, to evaluate COVID crisis management, mitigation, the recovery of our community, and the restart of our economy.

This YoCo STRONG Recovery Task Force will evaluate the response of the COVID crisis in our community, and determine what steps are necessary to ensure the continued health and safety of our citizenry. CLICK HERE FOR FULL RELEASE

On  Thursday, April 30 we hosted Zoom webinar focused on the COVID-19 economic recovery strategy for York County.  YCEA shared recently-commissioned, York County-specific economic modeling related to COVID’s impact and discuss how the modeling and other data points inform our strategy to restart the economy in the short term and make it more resilient in the future. Click here for a recording of that webinar, and accompanying documents..

YoCo Strong Recovery Task Force Update
Click here for the Task Force Report & Recommendations.
Click here for the executive summary of the report & recommendations. 
The executive summary is also available in Spanish here.
A webinar was held on June 10 reviewing the priority recommendations. Click here for a recording.

Developing Our Recovery Strategy

Following the 2007-2008 recession, York County’s recovery lagged behind the national average.  We need strategic, coordinated action to ensure we can accelerate our recovery following this crisis.

To that end, last week YCEA convened a group of business and civic leaders to discuss what we can do now to plan for the future.  Some short-term outcomes from that discussion are:

 

  • We are working with the economic consulting firm Fourth Economy to better understand the phases of recovery, produce models to help us understand COVID’s economic impact, and evaluate strategies for recovery. We are planning to share those findings in the coming weeks.

 

  • We are collaborating with private and public funders to evaluate existing and potential local pools of funding for immediate needs and recovery needs, especially for those businesses not currently well-served by federal and state funding programs.

 

  • We will continue to use the York County Economic Action Plan and its working groups as an existing structure to consider these issues by sector and channel the outcomes into an actionable plan.  To participate in a working group, please click here.

Federal and States Recovery Perspectives

FEDERAL
President Trump outlined his administration’s recommendations on a phased approach to reducing restrictions and restarting the national economy. The recommendations provide a framework for individual states to determine their own transition plans for restarting the economy.

STATE
Governor Wolf offered an update on the state’s approach to easing restrictions and opening additional businesses. Click here to read his plan.
The Standards of the Plan Include:

—Data-driven, criteria that is evidence based for regional reopening.

—Recommendations & Guidance for employers, individuals, and health care providers for assured accountability through reopening.

—Ensuring adequate Personal Protection Equipment and testing is available.

—A mechanism to put into place a monitor and surveillance program for virus outbreak mitigation.

—Protections for the most vulnerable populations of the state.

—Limitation on large gatherings unrelated to occupations during the reopening process.

The Governor plans to rollout more guidance next week, where he plans to include specific steps in which he hopes to partner with the legislature, agencies, experts in public health, and stakeholders.

Wolf announces a color-coded system that could allow some counties or regions to ease restrictions as soon as May 8.
First announcement gives construction industry the greenlight to resume in-person operations on Friday, May 1. Read the announcement here.

 

 

Eligibility and Criteria

For more information, please visit the website.
Updated 3.3.21
Subject to Change

Background
On February 5th, Governor Wolf signed into law Act 1, legislation that set aside $145 million in funds to aid hospitality industry businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. York County will receive $5.08 million to award to hospitality businesses with the NAICS designation 721(Accommodations) and 722 (Food Services and Drinking Places), and to cover administrative costs for operating the program. The York County Economic Development Corporation serves as the Certified Economic Development Organization (“CEDO”) for York County and is an affiliated entity of the York County Economic Alliance (“YCEA”). As such, the County of York has contracted with the York County Economic Alliance and its affiliated entity York County Economic Development Corporation as the authorized CEDO to administer this program. Most of the guidelines for eligibility and criteria for this funding program were created by the legislation included in Act 1 of 2021.

YoCo CHIRP Eligibility

  1. The YoCo CHIRP (COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program) Fund is awarding grants to eligible hospitality businesses ranging from $5,000 to $50,000 that do not require repayment to alleviate revenue losses and pay eligible operating expenses due to the COVID-19 pandemic incurred commencing on March 1, 2020, to the date of application submission.
  2. An eligible business must have been in operation by or prior to February 15, 2020.
  3. An eligible business must be a for-profit entity and not a publicly traded company.
  4. An eligible business must not have a tangible net worth more than $15 million as of February 15, 2020.
  5. An eligible business must have 300 or fewer full-time equivalent employees (FTE’s).
  6. An eligible business must have a physical location in York County, Pennsylvania and must file a federal and state tax return. The grant program’s priority will be to exhaust all funds to individual award recipients before funding multiple entities with common ownership.
  7. An eligible business must have a NAICS designation within the accommodation sector (721) or Food Services and Drinking Places sector (722). These are the ONLY eligible NAICS codes, pursuant to PA Act 1 of 2021.
  8. An eligible business may be structured as a C-corporation, S-corporation, limited liability company, partnership, or sole proprietorship.
  9. An eligible business must be open, or have a plan to reopen, and cannot cease operations following check disbursement.\
  10. Grant awards may not be used to pay the same eligible operating expenses for which an eligible business received payment, reimbursement, or loan forgiveness from the CARES Act of 2020, Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, or the COVID-19 Emergency Supplement to the General Appropriations Act of 2019. Receipt of a prior Federal or Commonwealth grant does not disqualify an applicant.
  11. An eligible business must demonstrate:

If the business started between prior to January 1, 2019:
A reduction in annual revenue decline of 25% or reduction in quarterly revenues of 25% or greater when comparing quarterly revenues from the same quarters in 2019 and 2020.

If the business started between July 1-December 31, 2019:
Quarter 3 or Quarter 4 revenue of 2019 must show at least a 25% decline compared to any quarter in 2020.

If the business started between October 1-December 31, 2019:
Quarter 4 revenue of 2019 must show at least a 25% decline compared to any quarter in 2020.

If the business started between January 1-February 15, 2020:
The entity must demonstrate at least a 25% revenue decline when comparing the first quarter of 2020 to any other quarter in 2020.

2019 Business Quarters are defined as such:
Q1 2019: January 1 - March 31
Q2 2019: April 1 - June 30
Q3 2019: July 1 - September 30
Q4 2019: October 1 - December 31

2020 Business Quarters are defined as such:
Q1 2020: January 1 - March 31
Q2 2020: April 1 - June 30
Q3 2020: July 1 - September 30
Q4 2020: October 1 - December 31

Ineligible Applicants

● Businesses that do not have a physical location in York County, Pennsylvania.
● Government-owned entities or elected official offices.
● Businesses that have ceased operations with no plan to reopen.
● Businesses that spend more than 51% of their budgeted expenses engaged in political or lobbying activities.
Applicant or business currently in bankruptcy proceedings or guilty of criminal fraud felony within the last five years or under current investigation for fraud.
● Businesses delinquent with 2019, or prior years, County Hotel Tax or County Property Tax with no documented plan for repayment (not on a payment plan).
● Nonprofit Organizations
● Applicants not in the specified eligible hospitality NAICS codes pursuant to PA Act 1 of 2021.

Other YoCo CHIRP Grant Details
Grants range from $5,000 to $50,000 and do not require repayment for businesses adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The YCEA will provide application assistance and technical support, subject to the release and indemnity set forth in the applicant certification. The YCEA staff is NOT permitted to submit the application on the applicant’s behalf.

Grant funds are eligible to be used for COVID-19 expenses as defined by Act 1 to alleviate revenue losses and pay eligible operating expenses due to the COVID-19 pandemic incurred from March 1, 2020 to the date of the application submission.

Eligible businesses must agree and complete an applicant certification form at the time of submitting an application.

Applications will not be reviewed until the application window has closed on March 31st at 5:00 p.m. It is anticipated that the total application funding request will exceed the amount of funding available to disburse. In which case, applications will be compiled, reviewed, and scored. A list of recommended approvals will be presented to the County Commissioners for their approval. This list will be presented using unique identification numbers to ensure anonymity of the applicant, until a final award has been made. If funding is awarded, the applicant will be notified. A grant contract will be required to be executed prior to fund disbursement. Upon execution of a grant contract, the grant award will be transferred electronically via ACH. Upon completion of the program and all funding disbursements made, the cumulative award list will be made public in accordance with the Pennsylvania Right to Know Law.

Grant Funding Priorities
Priority in the awarding of grants shall be given to eligible applicants that:

●  Have not received a loan or grant issued under the authority of the Commonwealth, the Commonwealth's political subdivisions, or by the Federal Government under the CARES Act

●  For example: SBA Payroll Protection Program, other SBA Disaster/Emergency Funds, PA COVID-19 Working Capital Access program, YoCo Strong Restart Grant Fund or City of York COVID-19 relief program.

●  Were subject to closure by the proclamation of disaster emergency issued by the Governor on March 6, 2020, and any renewal of the state of disaster emergency; or can demonstrate one of the following:
●  A reduction in revenue:

●  A reduction in gross receipts of 50% or more for the period beginning after March 31, 2020, and ending before Dec. 31, 2020, in comparison to the period beginning after March 31, 2019, and ending before Dec. 31, 2019.
●  If the eligible applicant was not in operation during the entire comparison period, but was in operation on Feb. 15, 2020, a monthly average reduction in revenue of 50 percent or more for the period beginning after March 31, 2020, and ending before Dec. 31, 2020, in comparison to the period beginning after Jan. 1, 2020, and ending before April 1, 2020.
●  Historically disadvantaged businesses federally defined as businesses that are 51% or more owned and operated by persons of color.
●  Businesses that are 51% or more owned by a woman or armed service veteran.

Although applicants meeting these criteria will receive prioritization, we encourage all eligible applicants to apply and anticipate awarding grants outside these prioritization areas.

Funding Tiers
Grant requests shall be the lower of the: (1) eligible grant amount based on the revenue or, (2) the amount of eligible expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 and date of application submission, not already paid for with other government COVID relief funding programs, including but not limited to: SBA Payroll Protection Program, other SBA Disaster/Emergency Funds, PA COVID-19 Working Capital Access program, YoCo Strong Restart Grant Fund or City of York COVID-19 relief program.

Grant awards will range from $5,000 to $50,000 per applicant in $5,000 increments. Award amounts may be adjusted to accommodate grant eligibility and application demand as necessary.

Annual RevenueGrant Amount
Up to $25,000$5,000
$25,001 -$50,000-Up to $10,000
$50,001 - $100,000Up to $15,000
$100,001- $250,000Up to $20,000
$250,001 - $500,000Up to $25,000
$500,001- $750,000Up to $30,000
$750,001 - $1,000,000Up to $35,000
$1,000,001 - $1,500,000Up to $40,000
$1,500,001 - $2,500,000<Up to $45,000
Above $2,500,001Up to $50,000

Eligible Use of Funds
This grant program was established to alleviate revenue losses and pay eligible operating expenses due to the COVID-19 pandemic incurred from March 1, 2020 to date of the application submission:

●  Funds can be used for working capital/operating expenses including payroll and non-payroll expenses, that are both ordinary and necessary. An ordinary expense is one that is common and accepted in an eligible applicant’s industry. A necessary expense is one that is helpful and appropriate for an eligible applicant’s trade or business. The operating expense must have been incurred between March 1, 2020 and the date of application submission.

●  Examples include, but are not limited to

●  Payroll costs, costs related to the continuation of group health care benefits during periods of paid sick, medical, or family leave, and insurance premiums.
●  Working capital for the purpose of paying mortgage principal and interest payments (but not mortgage prepayments); and principal and interest payments on any other debt obligations that were incurred before February 15, 2020.
●  Rent payments, utility payments.

●  For rent, lease or mortgage payments, the obligation must have been in force before February 15, 2020. A mortgage or lease agreement in force before February 15, 2020 that was refinanced or restructured after February 15, 2020 is deemed in force and is still eligible. For utility costs, service must have begun before February 15, 2020.
●  Working capital for the purpose of covering the costs of re-opening business operations after being fully or partially closed due to the state-mandated business closure period as long as the expense was incurred due to COVID-19.
●  Any expenses (costs) incurred related to the expense of implementing COVID-19 preventative measures, including but not limited to specialized equipment, barriers, PPE, and employee training expenses to ensure compliance with state and federal CDC guidelines for reopening.
●  Any COVID-19 related expenses not already paid for with other government COVID relief funding programs, including but not limited to: SBA Payroll Protection Program, other SBA Disaster/Emergency Funds, PA COVID-19 Working Capital Access program, YoCo Strong Restart Grant Fund or City of York COVID-19 relief program.

Grant awards may not be used to pay the same eligible operating expenses for which an eligible business received payment, reimbursement, or loan forgiveness from other government COVID relief funding programs, including but not limited to: SBA Payroll Protection Program, other SBA Disaster/Emergency Funds, PA COVID-19 Working Capital Access program, YoCo Strong Restart Grant Fund or City of York COVID-19 relief program.

Receipt of a prior Federal or Commonwealth grant does not disqualify an applicant.

Documents Needed to Apply
The following documents will help the applicant prepare their application and will be needed at the time of submission. It is possible that the applicant will be required to provide additional documentation throughout the review period.

●  Applicant businesses will be required to submit their filed business 2019 tax return – must be in an electronic form for online upload, such as PDF or JPEG

●  If the applicant does not have a 2019 tax return due to starting their business in 2020 prior to February 15, 2020 then a Profit and Loss (P&L) statement for the entire year shall be permitted. In addition, the applicant shall provide a profit and loss statement from January 1, 2021 through the date of application. The P&Ls must be provided in an electronic form for online upload, such as PDF or JPEG.

●  If you are unsure how to prepare these documents, there will be a series of webinars on https://www.preparedyork.com/chirp/ for you to attend and learn how to prepare these documents.

●  Applicant will also need to provide internal financial statements showing revenue for 2019 and 2020.

●  A template is available in Spanish and English on https://www.preparedyork.com/chirp/.

●  Any form of acceptable government-issued photo ID for primary business owner; must be in an electronic form for online upload, such as PDF or JPEG.
●  Signed Application certification
●  W-9 with business mailing address, and a business voided check to process grant check if selected as a recipient.
●  Proof of tax payment plan- required only if the applicant is found delinquent on 2019, or prior years, York County property tax or 2019, or prior years, County Hotel Excise Tax. Please call the York County Tax Claim Bureau office at 717-771-9232 if you believe you are delinquent on your 2019 business property/hotel tax.


Revenue Tier List
Annual Revenue Grant Amount
Up to $25,000 $5,000
$25,001 -$50,000 Up to $10,000
$50,001 - $100,000 Up to $15,000
$100,001- $250,000 Up to $20,000
$250,001 - $500,000 Up to $25,000
$500,001- $750,000 Up to $30,000
$750,001 - $1,000,000 Up to $35,000
$1,000,001 - $1,500,000 Up to $40,000
$1,500,001 - $2,500,000 Up to $45,000
Above $2,500,001 Up to $50,000
 
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