Friday, June 18th, 2021

City announces details of new grant program

Posted: Friday, December 18, 2020

A new grant program will reimburse qualifying local businesses and non-profits that take steps to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 by making riskier settings and activities safer.

The City of Huntington COVID-19 Mitigation Grant Program has begun accepting applications. Interested businesses can find eligibility requirements and the application form at www.huntington.in.us by clicking “Latest COVID-19 Information for Huntington County.”

The grant program aims to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 at entities where the primary activity requires not wearing a mask indoors while around others, such as eating at a bar or restaurant or exercising at a gym.

Mitigation efforts must be in full compliance with all applicable fire and building codes to qualify for reimbursement. Examples of eligible uses of grant funds include, but are not limited to: Heaters for outdoor seating; awnings with no walls; qualified air purification units and plastic shields or dividers.

City staff will review applications weekly and make recommendations to the Board of Public Works & Safety for funding, and all BPWS decisions will be considered final. Federal CARES Act money allocated to the city will fund the program, which will close once all program funding has been exhausted.

“Through this program and other measures taken over the past months, the City of Huntington remains committed to supporting our local business community as it does its part to lower the risk of COVID-19 spread in our city,” Mayor Richard Strick said Tuesday.

City leaders on Tuesday also announced details of a new Making Space Initiative, which offers temporary accommodations to allow businesses increased flexibility to encourage curbside pickup and outdoor seating.

Businesses with parking lots may submit an application to convert parking spots to outdoor seating areas temporarily. Such areas may not eliminate or interfere with handicap parking or ADA accessibility. Businesses with on-street parking may submit an application to convert parking spots contiguous to their frontage to outdoor seating areas temporarily.

Businesses located downtown with frontage on Market and Washington streets between Cherry and Warren streets may submit a joint application allowing the temporary conversion of Market Street to one-way westbound traffic and Washington Street to one-way eastbound traffic. Businesses with on-street parking may submit an application to convert two-hour parking contiguous to their frontage to 15-minute parking temporarily to ease carryout and curbside pickup.