Duke Energy Hometown Revitalization Small Business:
Love All the Local Places Grant
The Duke Energy Hometown Revitalization Grant Program awarded $25,000 via a partnership with a local 501c3 nonprofit to 30 communities across the state. The funds support small businesses that have been challenged by COVID-19 to change their business practices or to improve the external or internal features of their business.
Fuquay-Varina Downtown Association (FVDA) was awarded $25,000 through this program and will distribute the funds to businesses within its focus as a downtown organization. FVDA will award net funds to the grantees after the cost of administration of the program is paid for from the award.
Eligible businesses will:
- Have less than 50 employees
- Apply for between $500- $2,500 in funding support
- Complete their work within 6 months of being selected
- Operate a brick-and-mortar business within Fuquay-Varina. Home-based or virtual business are excluded. Non-Profits and franchises are permitted.
- Match Grant Funds 1:1
*As an organization focused on downtown, FVDA will prioritize applicants located in Downtown Districts (DC1/ DC2), but any business in Fuquay-Varina may apply.
Applicants may submit questions to email@example.com.
Eligible uses for the funds fall into two categories:
COVID-19 Reimbursement (Approximately 20% of the grants will be awarded in this category)
Business owners interested in COVID-19 Reimbursement must provide evidence of expenses between March 2020-present due to changes in service, business practices, or physical location as a result of COVID-19 public health restrictions. These can include, but are not limited to:
- Offering new online purchasing services
- Offering new drive-through services
- Offering new delivery services
- Making physical changes or additions to a business (buying additional seating outdoors, plexi-glass barriers, etc.)
*This grant is not intended to replace lost revenue due to staffing shortages or business closures, but to support the extra costs or physical changes of a business since COVID-19.
Business/Property Improvements (Approximately 80% of the grants will be awarded in this category)
Business owners interested in Business or Property Improvements must provide a proposed budget for projects to improve a business or property that will attract customers or help the business adapt to public health restrictions. These can include, but are not limited to:
- Making physical changes or additions to a business to adapt to COVID-19 (adding a drive-through window, buying additional seating outdoors.)
- Making business or service changes to adapt to COVID-19
- Online services
- Drive-through services
- Delivery services
- Making physical changes or additions to improve the business
- Internal business improvements (seating, decorations, sales equipment, etc.)
- Other business improvements (creating an online presence, advertising, etc.)
*If the business owner does not own the property where they operate, they must include a letter of permission from the property owner for the work described. Any agreement about the work must be decided independently between the property and business owner.
Interested business owners will complete an application that requires:
- A summary of the business
- How COVID-19 has impacted the business
- How the funds will be used
- How the funds help move your business forward
Applicants that choose to be reimbursed for previous COVID-19 related expenses must include receipts with the application. Applicants that choose new COVID-19 related business/property improvements will be responsible for paying the cost of the improvements and showing receipts and proof of the work before being reimbursed by FVDA. Applicants must check in with FVDA within 2 months and complete the work within 6 months. Reimbursement will be made within 30 days.
After the business submits their application by January 5, 2022, FVDA’s Independent Review Committee will review the applications and notify approved businesses by January 15, 2022. Note that a summary of the grants awarded will be included on the report filed with the grantor, Duke Energy Hometown Revitalization Small Business Grant.
In order to have an objective process for disbursement of grant funds, evaluation criteria have been set in place:
30% Purpose of Grant: Clear statement of what funds will be used for, eligible uses, reference to COVID-19 resiliency as a major part of the grant
50% Need & Impact: Description of need for the project, expected outcomes, and impact on Downtown Fuquay-Varina.
20% Completion & Communicativeness: Completion of the application, complete and clear attachments to the application when requested.
*The Duke Energy Foundation and FVDA encourage small business owners of all business type, experience, and background to apply, including Women and Minority Owned businesses.
Commonly Asked Questions:
Q. My business is not located downtown, can I still apply?
A. You do not have to be a downtown business to be eligible to apply. As an organization focused on downtown, FVDA will prioritize applicants located in Downtown Districts (DC1/DC2), but any business in Fuquay-Varina may apply.
Q. What does “Match Grant Funds 1:1” mean?
A. The grant will reimburse $500-$2500
Total project cost: $5,000
Property owner/tenant share: $2,500
Grant program share: $2,500
Total project: $5,000
*Total project cost may exceed programs portion – project grant will receive no more than the determined grant amount ($500-$2500)
Q. When will the grant be awarded?
A. Approved businesses will be notified by January 15th. If the application was submitted for COVID-19 Reimbursement, checks will processed in 7-10 days from notification. Applicants that choose COVID-19 related Business/Property improvements projects will be responsible for paying the cost of the improvements and then showing receipts and proof of the work before being reimbursed by FVDA. Applicants must check in with FVDA within 2 months and complete the work within 6 months. Reimbursement will be made within 30 days