Skagit County businesses receive $1.8 million in disaster relief funds

Skagit County businesses receive $1.8 million in disaster relief funds Main Photo

1 Jun 2023

Thanks to the Economic Development Alliance of Skagit County (EDASC) and the Washington State Department of Commerce, 31 Skagit County small businesses have received $1.8 million in disaster relief funds.

The grants covered losses from disasters as far back as late 2021, such as the major Skagit River flooding, the king tide floods that impacted La Conner late last year, freezing events, fires and more.

“We at EDASC have seen firsthand the challenges our businesses have faced following floods and other disasters,” said Aaron Weinberg, economic development manager at EDASC. “Given the significant impacts, these grant programs will play a crucial role in providing essential financial support, enabling Skagit businesses to focus on recovery and rebuilding projects.”

Commerce earlier this year launched two grant programs to help businesses recover damages incurred from disasters. The Northwest Washington Disaster Relief Grant – providing funds to businesses impacted by the late 2021 floods in Skagit, Whatcom and Clallam counties – awarded $1.16 million to 23 Skagit County businesses. Awards for that program ranged from $10,000 to $150,000.

EDASC provided technical assistance, communications, and program advising for this grant.

This grant program filled a strong need from businesses mostly located in Sedro-Woolley to Marblemount, where flooding had the greatest impact.
The second grant program, called the Statewide Disaster Relief Fund, saw eight Skagit County businesses receive a total of $619,472 in awards. While the first grant only covered a specific flood, this statewide grant accounted for many types of disasters including fires, freezing, damage due to power outages, and more. Grant awards ranged from $1,000 to $300,000 for this program.

EDASC contracted with Commerce to provide technical assistance, communications, and administration for this program.

The money for both programs came from American Rescue Plan Act funds.