COVID-19: Resources for Businesses

Montgomery County encourages local businesses to explore all forms of Federal and State assistance that may be available.

Resources to assist in this search include:

Hotel Relief Grant Program Round III Opens
Monday, May 3, 2021

Montgomery County, in partnership with Visit Montgomery, will begin Round III of the County’s Hotel Relief Grant Program on Monday, May 3 The program is designed to help hotels that were significantly impacted by the COVID-19 health crisis.

Hotels and other lodging establishments that were approved for a grant in Round I or Round II of this program do not need to reapply. Those applications will be re-evaluated for eligibility.

Eligible businesses that did not previously apply will be able to submit an application during the third-round application period between Monday, May 3, and Sunday, May 9.

Grant awards are capped at $25,000 for locally-owned hotels and other lodging establishments.

Details on the program, including eligibility requirements and frequently asked questions, are available on the Hotel Relief Grant Program web page.  

Businesses are encouraged to check their standing with the State of Maryland before submitting an application as awards cannot be made to businesses that are not in good standing.

The Hotel Relief Grant program is fully funded by the State of Maryland. It is administered by Visit Montgomery in partnership with the Montgomery County Business Advancement Team.

Questions about the program should be sent to:

Public Health Emergency Grant Reporting

Businesses that received a Public Health Emergency Grant (PHEG) are required to submit a report detailing how the grand funds were spent. All recipients received an email with a link to the reporting form. This email also included the grant application number and the amount of the grant. If you received this email request, please complete the report by May 15, 2021

Instructions and sample reports

Montgomery County 
Small Business Rental Assistance Program

This grant program was approved by the County Council to provide grants to small businesses in qualifying industries to support rental costs, both current and arrears rent payments. The grant is intended to mitigate the injury experienced by Montgomery County businesses as a result of the pandemic, especially in light of the extended duration of the hardship.

The Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) will administrator this program on behalf of Montgomery County Government. A Program Overview is available on the LEDC web site, where businesses can learn more about eligibility and sign up to be notified when applications open.

Restaurant Revitalization Fund

The American Rescue Plan Act established the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) to provide funding to help restaurants and other eligible businesses keep their doors open. This program will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location. Recipients are not required to repay the funding as long as funds are used for eligible uses no later than March 11, 2023.

Registration for the SBA application portal is now open. Applications open on Monday, May 3, 2021, at noon ET. See How to apply for more detail.

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant

The program includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance.

Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees.

Eligible entities include:

  • Live venue operators or promoters
  • Theatrical producers
  • Live performing arts organization operators
  • Museum operators
  • Motion picture theater operators (including owners)
  • Talent representatives

Maryland Relief Act

Small Business Assistance Programs

As part of the bipartisan Relief Act of 2021, the Maryland Department of Commerce will provide funding through six new programs targeting specific groups of businesses. 

Small, Minority and Women Owned Business Account

Montgomery County small, minority and woman-owned businesses facing continued financial impacts from the novel coronavirus have access to funding through the Maryland Small, Minority and Women-Owned Business Account COVID-19 RELIEF Program, established with $10 million in Maryland Relief Act funding.

Relief Act funds will be disbursed through Commerce’s existing Small, Minority, and Women-Owned Business Account, also known as the Video Lottery Terminal (VLT) program. The VLT fund traditionally uses proceeds from video lottery terminals (slots) to assist small, minority, and women-owned businesses.

At least 50% of the VLT allocations are designated for small, minority and women-owned businesses located within certain targeted areas of the six casinos. The other 50% is available to small, minority and women-owned businesses located throughout Maryland.

 The $10 million in Relief Act funds will be administered by the eight fund managers who operate this program on behalf of the Department of Commerce. Applications will be available through each fund manager, who are located in various regions of the state. Fund Managers, who oversee the distribution of video lottery terminal funds, will determine eligibility requirements for this program.  

Fund managers have the ability to distribute these funds as grants, although they are not required to do so and may elect to disburse the funds as loans.

The Anne Arundel County Economic Development Corporation is actively promoting Maryland Relief Act loans for businesses throughout the state and will consider a matching grant for businesses that qualify.

Anne Arundel Economic Development Corporation (AAEDC)

VOLT Covid Relief Program – now open, closes May 1.

AAEDC’s VOLT program has been allocated $1.25 million for this initiative. AAEDC will accept applications for loans and matching grants to help small, minority, woman and veteran owned businesses recover from the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Questions about the program or application process should be directed to:
Tim Sharp, Loan Underwriter
(410) 222-7410

VLT fund managers that actively promote the Video Lottery Terminal Program:

Baltimore County, Maryland
Department of Economic and Workforce Development
Boost Fund
Stanley Jacobs, Chief Lending Officer
(410) 887-8000 

City of Baltimore Development Corp.
VLT Revolving Loan Fund
Jeffrey P. Pillas, Vice President & Chief Financial Officer
(410) 837-9305

FSC First
Small Business Flex Fund
Dawn R. Medley, Vice President, Business Finance Programs
(301) ​​883-6900

Howard County Economic Development Authority
Catalyst Fund
Darshni Patel​, Loan Fund Manager
(410) 313-6512

Tri County Council for Western Maryland
State Lottery Terminal (SLoT) Fund
Chris Funk, Business Development Loan Officer

Additional VLT fund managers:

Meridian Management Group, Inc.
Randy Croxton, Chief Investment Officer
(410) 333-4270

Maryland Capital Enterprises Inc.
Maurice Ames, Director of Operations
(410) 546-1900

Small Business COVID-19 RELIEF Grant Program

To support Maryland’s small businesses facing continued financial impacts from the novel coronavirus, the state established through bipartisan legislation the new Maryland Small Business COVID-19 RELIEF Grant Program in 2021 with $10 million in state Relief Act funding.

The application period for this program closed on April 6, 2021. If you submitted an application and want to check your status, please check the application portal.

Commuter and Shuttle Bus COVID-19 RELIEF Grant Program 

To support Maryland commuter and shuttle bus companies facing continued financial impacts from the novel coronavirus, the state established through bipartisan legislation the Maryland Commuter and Shuttle Bus COVID-19 RELIEF Grant Program with $8 million in state Relief Act funding. The grant is directed to those companies that were impacted by reduction of routes by the Maryland Transit Administration.  

For questions, please reach out to

Additional grant programs targeted toward Online Sales and Telework Assistance, Restaurant and Caterers as well as Lodging and Accommodation establishments will be managed at the local level. Details regarding the application period for these programs is not yet available. Please check back for more information as it becomes available.

Important Updates on Unemployment Benefits

Includes self-employed, independent contractors, “gig” workers.

Continued Assistance for Unemployed Workers Act Unemployment Insurance Programs

On December 27, the federal COVID-19 relief package, called the “Continued Assistance for Unemployed Workers Act” that extends the CARES Act programs and provides additional federal unemployment benefits, was signed into law.

Read the details of the Continued Assistance for Unemployed Workers Act

Visit the Maryland Department of Labor Division of Unemployment for additional information. 

Additional Business Resources: