Local Relief for Maine Small Businesses

cash icon, local relief programsThere are many local relief programs across the state of Maine that are offering small grants, loans, and resources to help you and your small business stay afloat as you cope with the impacts of Coronavirus. There are municipalities, banks, and non-profit organizations offering small business assistance programs throughout the state. If you’re impacted by Coronavirus in any way, it’s likely you are eligible for most of your local programs. Every little bit helps – we encourage you to seek as many opportunities as possible.

Updated 8/31/2020. This directory is updated regularly to include available opportunities. Don’t see your town or county listed? Call your local economic development to ask about opportunities.

New:

Micro-enterprise CDBG (Community Development Block) Grants The Maine Department of Economic & Community Development (DECD) is granting up to $5,000 for businesses with five or fewer employees if the owner’s income is in the low to moderate range. Eligible businesses must also show revenue loss as a direct consequence of COVID-19. This is federal CARES act money and is being disbursed through a partnership with the SBDC. Please contact us for more information and to apply.

Maine Economic Recovery Grant Program This program, launched by Governor Mills, is backed by $200 million in Federal CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF). This will provide financial relief for businesses and non-profit organizations that incurred business disruptions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to go straight to the application. 


AVCOG SBA Microloan ProgramOffering microloans for small businesses in Androscoggin, Franklin, and Oxford Counties. Up to $10,000 for 3 years at 3% interest rate. Funds can be used for working capital, equipment, or refinancing existing debt (not for real estate purchase).

Black Owned MaineBOM is a collective promoting unity and strength. BOM hosts a directory for Black-owned businesses, professionals, and nonprofits in Maine. They are giving out one-time, single micro-grants of $700 to a Black-Owned business in Maine each month. Apply online or download the paper application.

Bangor Cultural Assistance Covid-19 Relief GrantsThe Bangor City Council and Commission on Cultural Development is offering emergency grant funds to arts and culture institutions impacted. Funds are intended for operational support. Maximum of $1,000. The deadline is July 31, stay tuned for more info on any additional support.

CEI’s Wicked Reboot Loan – Coastal Enterprises is offering a special loan product using SBA microloan funds supported by the CARES Act to help businesses across Maine gain access to the capital they need to rebuild from the devastating impact of COVID.

City of Rockland Recovery Loan Program – This program offers deferred-payment loans of up to $5,000 at 0% APR to eligible businesses affected by Covid-19. Loans can be either real estate secured or installment loans.

 FAME (Finance Authority of Maine)Offering two direct loan programs for SBA borrowers as well as loans for businesses experiencing interruption and hardship. Contact FAME for updates to the program.

Maine International Trade Center Grants – Eligible exporting businesses may receive up to $20,000 in reimbursements totaling up to $20,000 per year for costs associated with international business development, exporting skills, and export marketing. 

Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Financing – MOFGA has compiled a list of emergency grants and resources for farmers during Covid-19. 

Portland Covid-19 Loan and Grant Programs – The City of Portland Development Corporation is providing financial assistance to businesses impacted, including those who have remained open, have furloughed employees, closed temporarily, or are home-based. The assistance comes in the form of three different programs, which are in addition to federal assistance programs.

USDA Coronavirus Food Assistance Program for FarmersThe Food Assistance Program provides direct relief for farmers and ranchers who face price declines and growing marketing costs. Applications accepted until August 28.

Waterville Region Small Business GrantCentral Maine Growth Council is providing direct grants of up to $2,000 to mid-Maine businesses and entrepreneurs. Applications are rolling until funding is exhausted. Applicants must complete the use of the funds by October 1, 2020.

Somerset County Covid-19 Relief Grants – The Somerset Economic Development Corporation and Somerset County Commissioners in West-Central Maine are offering relief grants of up to $5,000. Any for-profit business located in Somerset County is eligible. The first deadline is July 31 and there will be additional rounds pending funding. Funds can be used for immediate Covid-19 relief to assist with your payroll, utilities, rent, mortgage, insurance, inventory, production, and more.

South Portland: Covid-19 Relief Program – The South Portland Planning & Development Department is offering a Covid-19 relief program. You can apply for temporary outdoor services and operations for your business. If you own a restaurant, eatery, cafe, or brewery, make sure you reach out to the city to be listed in their “SoPo To-Go” initiative.

 To be added to this directory of opportunities, please contact mainesbdc@maine.edu. Special thanks to Maine SBDC Intern Madeleine Lutts who compiled these resources.