The City of Rochester and Olmsted County are quickly opening up new programs aimed at small business, non-profits and individual relief in response to Covid19. Because there are a number of programs and we are trying to roll the out as quickly as possible, I asked our team to select a landing page where we can post the latest information on what programs area available. In total the city is distributing about $8 million and the County $19 million in CARES ACT funding. We are also creating set asides for Women & Small Business Entities. I have specifically requested that we further carve out a portion exclusively for Minority Owned Businesses. I also wish to exempt organizations who have been problematic in terms of masking and other public safety policies or are not locally owned.
We are using the Rochester Ready website as the landing pad. We are prioritizing speed in posting programs to this site. As such don’t be surprised if there are some errors that we have to clean up. Many of these programs are going to be first come, first serve. As such I encourage everyone to bookmark this page and visit it frequently.
Additionally a number of my peers from around the state coauthored an editorial that ran in the Star Tribune imploring the Federal Government to provide direct aid to local governments. This has been left out of every relief package to date.