Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing another $1.5 billion worth of grants to small businesses affected by the pandemic.
It would increase the total small business grant funding allocated through the state in recent months to $4 billion, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Businesses could receive grants up to $25,000 through the program. The state estimates the money would be enough to provide grants to 150,000 small businesses statewide. The funding will need approval from the state legislature.
California created the small business grant program in the fall, and pumped $575 million into the program over the winter. Around 350,000 restaurants, retailers and other small businesses have requested grants totaling $4.5 billion.
Newsom detailed a $100 billion recovery plan earlier this week, funded largely by the state’s $76 billion surplus for the upcoming fiscal year.
The money would include $12 billion to address the state’s housing shortage, around $5.2 billion to cover back rent and a round of $600 stimulus checks to residents.
Newsom is also facing a recall election, and opponents say the small business grant program is an effort to woo voters ahead of that election.
Los Angeles County has been awarding grants to restaurants specifically. This week, 132 restaurants received funding of up to $3,500 for Covid relief.
[LAT] — Dennis Lynch