Skagit businesses receive boost from state grant
Tuesday, June 02, 2020
Twenty-nine Skagit County small businesses were awarded grants of up to $10,000 each through the state’s Working Washington Small Business Emergency Grant program, supporting businesses facing serious financial challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic and economic emergency.
An estimated 149 jobs will be saved by the grant funds, according to the state.
The selected pool of grantees includes 10 retailers, six manufacturers, two healthcare businesses, two professional service companies, one restaurant, one hospitality establishment, one salon, one gym, one marketing business, one driving school, one preschool, one marine repair company, and one health treatment facility.
EDASC also received grant funds to administer the program, which includes ongoing reporting and reimbursement.
Eligible grant expenditures include rent, utilities and more (excluding payroll).
In total, Skagit County businesses received $243,116 in support.
These funds will go right back into the community in the form of lease payments, supply purchases and payment of other bills. This has a second positive fiscal impact on the community.
Grant recipient Travis Crabb, owner of Mount Vernon manufacturer Neptune Marine, said the grant will help ensure his company remains successful.
“My focus right now within Neptune Marine is not one of profits, but of health, safety and basic needs for my employees,” Crabb said.
He said the grant will help with safety and health training for employees, as well as other basic expenses that support his workers such as utilities, rent, fuel, and more.
Grant recipient Nick Rennis, owner of Anacortes retailer The Business, said the grant will help his business continue through the unexpected disruption.
“It is heartwarming to see a focused local effort,” he said.
Grant recipient Jessie Mattingly, owner of Birdsview Brewing Company in Concrete, said sales were down 54 percent in May year-over-year.
"That is so damaging to a small business like ours," Mattingly said. "This grant will allow us to purchase the yeast and grain to make over 400 gallons of beer to sell to-go or in-house once we reopen in future phases."
The 29 grant recipients were among a pool of 61 applicants that EDASC submitted to the state for review. In total, about 400 Skagit County businesses applied for the grant.
“We are pleased to play a role in supporting these 29 businesses through this grant process,” said EDASC CEO John Sternlicht. “That said, we continue to work diligently to support the hundreds of businesses in need of assistance during this pandemic, as evidenced by the overwhelming number of applications submitted for this grant in a matter of days.”
EDASC’s website is continually updated with COVID-19 resources for businesses and workers. Click this link to view our COVID-19 Updates page. EDASC staff are also always available to provide support. For support, contact Economic Development Manager Tamsin Bell at firstname.lastname@example.org. There may also be additional opportunities on the horizon, so stay tuned.
The responses from both businesses receiving and not receiving grants has been positive, indicating the level of caring and support for the entire community.
EDASC would like to extend a special thanks to Governor Jay Inslee and the State Department of Commerce for making the grant funds available, even bumping the statewide total grant funds from $5 million to $10 million. Leftover funds in that pool -- either those declined or not validated for reimbursement -- will be re-allocated at the discretion of Commerce.
EDASC would also like to thank its volunteer review committee, who put in many hours to review applications and contribute their perspectives and insights, and Bell, who organized this enormous undertaking.
List of Skagit County grant recipients
- Bananabelt Boats
- Birdsview Brewing Company
- Cap Sante Inn
- Casey J Andrus OD, PLLC
- Chuckanut Lighting
- Copy & Print Store
- Ferris Robbin
- Garden Path Fermentation
- Gregg's Diesel Service
- Jennings Yarn and Needlecraft
- Kids Stuff
- Lisser & Associates
- Lyon's Furniture and Sleep Center*
- Makers Compounding Pharmacy
- Mount Baker Gymnastics
- Neptune Marine
- Pasek Cellars Winery
- Sedro-Woolley Family Dental Center
- Slow Loris Inc.
- The Bony Pony
- The Business
- Through the Garden Gate
- United Northwest Recovery Center
- Vehicle Training Group, LLC dba Cascade Motorcycle Safety
*Lyon’s Furniture and Sleep Center declined to accept the grant, citing an improved business outlook and wanting the funds to go to a business in greater need.
EDASC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that supports existing Skagit companies and works with prospective companies on site expansion and location, workforce training, identifying incentives, and assisting with access to capital, permitting, research, and other matters. In addition, EDASC’s strategies focus on improving assets and amenities within Skagit County and its varied cities and towns, strengthening communities and working to make Skagit County more prosperous, inclusive, sustainable, resilient, and equitable.