(Spokane County, WA)– This morning, the Spokane Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved the allocation of up to $10.8 million of CARES Act funding for a grant program to support local accommodation, food services, arts, entertainment and recreation industries. The Spokane County Hospitality Relief Grant application process and administration will be handled by Greater Spokane Inc.(GSI) and will help offset the safety and operating costs, rent, and other allowable expenses for those sectors.
Hospitality businesses can apply for a grant of up to $20,000 to assist with operating costs and to help reopen and stay open safely in compliance with state and local guidance regarding precautions such as masking, physical distancing, sanitation, and other associated employee and customer safety costs.
Chair of the Spokane County Board of Commissioners, Al French stated, “The hospitality and tourism sector has been hit especially hard by the coronavirus pandemic. With support from the community and the allocation of these funds, we hope that this industry, and all of our regional industries, benefit and emerge successful after the pandemic subsides. This is a great use of CARES funds.”
The latest numbers from the state Employment Security Department show 106,000 hospitality employees statewide are no longer working. About 8,000 of those are in Spokane County.
“Our restaurateurs deeply appreciate this relief funding which helps them with the increased costs they pay as a result of the pandemic, and the loss of business and dining capacity,” said Derek Baziotis, Spokane Chapter President, Washington Hospitality Association. “This funding gives our local business owners the direct support they desperately need to help their businesses survive.”
The application, parameters, and fulfillment process are being finalized. The application period is expected to begin in early November and will be announced publicly at that time. The target date for organizations to receive funding is by December 4, 2020.
About Spokane County
Spokane County serves over half a million citizens and 13 municipal jurisdictions, making it the fourth-largest county in the State of Washington. For more information, visit www.spokanecounty.org, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.
About Greater Spokane Inc.
Greater Spokane Inc. (GSI) is the Spokane region’s business development organization. GSI creates the place where organizations come together to advocate for the region, drive strategic economic growth, and champion a talented workforce. GSI is funded through a combination of private and public investment, including nearly 900 private-sector members; Spokane County; Washington State Department of Commerce; and the cities of Spokane, Spokane Valley, Cheney, Deer Park, Liberty Lake, Airway Heights, Medical Lake, Millwood, Newport, and the Kalispel Tribe of Indians. For more information visit GreaterSpokane.org.