Round 4: Frequently Asked Questions
Last Updated: 4/1/21
Q: What is the Working Washington Grants: Round 4 program?
A: The Department of Commerce’s Working Washington Small Business Grant Program provides funds to help small businesses that have struggled due to COVID-19. Commerce ran three rounds of grants in 2020. Commerce is now opening a fourth round.
- Businesses must receive their grant award by June 30, 2021.
- Commerce must take into account previous Working Washington awards distributed by the agency or affiliated partners. This means grant awards will vary. The maximum grant award will be $25,000.
- Grants must be equitably distributed statewide and to historically underserved populations.
Q: Who is Round 4 intended for?
A: These grants are aimed at for-profit small businesses in industries that have hard costs associated with their operations, and faced the most significant challenges to paying those hard costs due to mandated closures. Hard costs include things like rent, utilities or payroll.
We encourage all eligible brick and mortar businesses that were required to close or significantly reduce operations due to public health and safety measures to apply.
Q: How are the applications prioritized?
A: Eligible applications will be reviewed based on the following priority criteria:
- Industries that had to close or significantly reduce operations as a result of safety and public health measures
- Size of the business (measured by 2019 revenue)
- Lost revenue between 2019 and 2020 as well as added expenses to maintain safe operations.
- To ensure equitable distribution, Commerce will also consider businesses operating in a rural or low-income community or that is owned by someone from a historically underserved population (minority, veteran, LGBTQ+ or women-owned).
Q: How long will I have to apply once the application portal opens?
A: The portal will be open for 12 days. It will open the morning of March 29 and close on April 9 at 5:00 PM PDT.
Q: Is this grant program first come, first served?
A: No. All applicants who meet eligibility requirements and apply between March 29 and April 9 at 5:00 PM PDT, will be considered.
Q: Where does the funding come from?
A: The $240 million comes from federal relief funds that were appropriated by the state legislature in HB 1368 and signed by Governor Inslee on February 19, 2021.
Q: What is Commerce doing to address equitable distribution?
A: Our statewide Business Resiliency Network helps provide extensive outreach to underserved and historically disadvantaged communities who may not otherwise know about the grants. Commerce is translating materials into 18 languages and providing technical support by phone in 8 languages in addition to English.
To ensure equitable distribution, Commerce will also consider businesses operating in a rural or low-income community or by someone from a historically underserved or disadvantaged population (minority, veteran, LGBTQ+ or woman-owned).
Q: How do I apply?
A: After reading the eligibility guidelines carefully, click the Apply button on this website between March 29 and April 9.
Before beginning the application, you will be prompted to sign in to your existing Submittable account or sign up for a new one. Signing up with Submittable is free and is required to submit an application for the Working Washington Grants: Round 4 program.
You will receive an email from Submittable asking you to verify your email address once you sign up. Verifying your email is not a required step before submitting your grant application, but it is a best practice for your security. Please be sure the email address you used to sign up for your Submittable account is one that you check regularly. Be sure to check your spam/junk folder in case you do not see an email from Submittable so you don’t miss any future emails about your application.
Once you are signed in to your account, you will see the application’s eligibility determination questions. Complete the questions and if you are eligible you will be directed to begin the application. You are welcome to answer the eligibility questions again should you fail.
A draft of your application will automatically save every few minutes. If you exit the application before completing it, your previous answers will be saved.
Once you’ve submitted your application, you’ll receive a confirmation email from Submittable sent to the email address you used to sign up with Submittable.
Q: Will I receive a notification that my application has been received?
A: Yes. You will receive an email confirmation from email@example.com once your application is received. Check your spam/junk folder if you do not receive an email shortly after submitting your application.
Q: Will I be able to edit my submission after applying should I make an error?
A: No. Before you press the “Apply” button, please make sure all the information in your application is accurate.
Q: Can I invite people to collaborate with me on the application?
A: Yes. To invite collaborators to your application, click the “Invite Collaborators” link located at the top right of the applications. Invited collaborators will receive an email, letting them know you’ve invited them to collaborate on a draft application. You may want to contact them directly to make them aware that an email should be arriving with this invitation.
Logistics & Portal Questions
Q: Can questions be answered in any language for the application?
A: We ask that all answers be in English. Please consider using a translation tool (like Google Translate) to help translate the response into English before submitting the final application.
Q: Why were the application dates of March 29 – April 9 selected?
A: The start date was selected to avoid adding demands on businesses applying for the recent PPP program, which at the time was slated to end on March 31st. The date was also selected to provide adequate time for outreach, preparing technical assistance resources and translation of materials.
The April 9 deadline was established because HB 1368 requires the funds to be distributed before June 30, 2021. Our experience is that it takes several weeks to complete the review and approval process in a fair and equitable manner, collect required documentation and complete payment to businesses.
Q: Why is the application period only open for 12 days?
A: Due to the limitations of HB 1368, we do not have the ability to keep the application portal open any longer. It takes time to process all of the applications fairly, distribute payments, collect the required documentation for 1099 tax forms, and complete required reporting in accordance with Washington state law.
Q: What hours will the Technical Support Centers be open?
A: The Technical Support Centers will provide support by phone and/or email to any applicants with questions related to the Working Washington Grants: Round 4 program. The public can access it by calling (855) 602-2722 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
There will be two support centers:
One offers email and phone support in English and is managed by our partner, Submittable. The hours are as follows:
- 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
- 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday & Sunday
- Email & Voicemails: Response provided within 8 business hours
March 29 – April 9 phone support will be available in seven different languages (Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Russian, Amharic, Arabic and Tagalog). The public can access it by calling (206) 333-0720.
The hours are as follows:
9 a.m. – 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
1 – 6 p.m. Saturday & Sunday
Q: What language support can the Technical Support Centers provide?
A: Our Technical Support centers will offer support by phone in the following eight languages: English, Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Russian, Amharic, Arabic and Tagalog. We will also provide support by email and phone in English.
The English-only support center will open on Monday, March 22 and can be reached at (855) 602-2722 or by emailing email@example.com.
Assistance in alternative languages to English will be available March 29 – April 9 by phone only at (206) 333-0720. Please learn more about the hours of both support centers here.
Q: Can I view the application in a language other than English?
A: The application portal offers a feature so you can change the language for buttons, menus, static text, and dialog boxes throughout the site. However, applications must be submitted in English.
The application portal will be supported by the following languages: Arabic, Amharic, Bosnian, German, English, Spanish, Canadian French, French, Hindi, Hmong, Portuguese, Bahasa Indonesia, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Chinese – Mandarin, Traditional Chinese, Haitian Creole, Vietnamese, Filipino, Hawaiian, Punjabi, Tagalog, Ukrainian, and Russian.
Q: Who do I contact for help?
A: Please contact our technical support center for assistance in navigating the application portal. The English-only support center will open on Monday, March 22 and can be reached at (855) 602-2722 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The number for the center that offers support in eight other languages will be posted very soon.
Assistance in alternative languages to English will be available March 29 – April 9 by phone only at (206) 333-0720. Please learn more about the hours of both support centers here.
Q: Who is Submittable?
A: Submittable is a company that offers application services for programs such as this. Washington State Department of Commerce has partnered with Submittable to manage the application process and distribute awards.
If you do not currently have a Submittable account, you will be prompted to register prior to accessing the form. Submittable recommends using Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Apple Safari as browsers. Internet Explorer is not supported.
Submittable has prepared technical support guidance regarding the application platform here.
Q: If I applied in a previous round with Commerce, do I have to apply again or will my application roll over?
A: You will need to apply again even if you applied in any other round as this program requires different criteria than prior rounds.
Q: Why is a 2019 federal tax return required for the Working Washington: Round 4 program?
A: Commerce requires this documentation to validate the applicant’s business status and income. New businesses that started shortly before or during the COVID-19 pandemic do not qualify for this program.
Q: What documents will I need to upload?
A: You will need to upload:
1. Copy of filed 2019 federal tax return for business and copy of 2020 federal tax return for business, if you have filed your 2020 taxes already. Applicable tax return documents are:
- IRS form 1040 (sole proprietors) and the following: Schedule C, Profit and Loss from Business
- IRS form 1065 Partnership Return (no K-1s required)
- IRS form 1120 Corporation Return (no schedules required)
- IRS form 1120S S Corporation Return (no K-1s required)
2. Valid government-issued photo identification (ID):
- A valid government-issued Photo ID of the applicant who is signing the grant application. Washington state-issued driver’s license/ID card, U.S. Passport book or card, or other valid, state-issued or federal-issued photo ID.
3. Verification of Tribal-member owned business, if applicable:
- A registration, or license, (or, may include official letters of Tribal ID) information from a federally recognized tribe.
Q: Can I upload multiple files for each document I need to provide?
A: Yes. Applicants can attach up to 15 files for each tax return, and up to 2 files for their valid government-issued photo ID and/or tribal-owned business verification, if applicable. All documentation must be provided in an electronic format for online uploads, such as PDF/JPEG/DOC or other accepted format. We recommend preparing your file(s) in advance for easy upload during the application.
Q: What options are available for submitting documents? Are photos acceptable, such as those taken by a smartphone?
A: Yes, although direct file uploads are preferred.
Q: Does the business owner need to attest to the certifications in the application or can the business manager/accountant use their name?
A: The business owner must electronically sign the application form and will also need to sign the contract agreement if awarded.
Q: Can I invite people to help/collaborate with me on my application?
A: Yes. To invite collaborators to your application, click the “Invite Collaborators” link located at the top right of the application once you are logged into Submittable and in the grant application. Invited collaborators will receive an email, letting them know you’ve invited them to collaborate on a draft application using Submittable. For details and guidance about this feature, please review information for submitters and for collaborators.
Q: Why are you using an online application portal and not allowing paper-based applications?
A: Due to the nature of a pandemic, and for the safety of Washington state employees and their community partners, we are limited to conducting this process through online applications only. Further, in order to process these grant awards in the time required, we must do it all online.
Q: Can I apply on my smartphone or tablet?
A: Yes, this new application is mobile-friendly and available on multiple browsers. Commerce recommends using Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Apple Safari as browsers (Internet Explorer is not supported), whether on your smartphone, tablet or computer to apply for this grant.
Q: Can I save my application and come back later to complete and submit?
A: Yes, the application will automatically save your work. There is also a “save” button at the bottom of the page. Please make sure to note your account login and password so you are able to access your application later. Please note, you will not be able to edit or make corrections to your application after it is submitted. You will also not be able to create more than one application per business. The grant application portal closes on April 9 at 5:00 pm PDT.
Q: Does the application timeout due to inactivity?
A: Yes, the application will time out after 24 hours of inactivity.
Q: What if I have technical questions about the application?
A: Our partner Submittable has prepared technical support guidance regarding the application platform here.
Q: Can I request an edit on my application?
A: If your application has been submitted, it is no longer editable. Further, Submittable is not permitted to edit the content of your application. However, you can “withdraw” your application and resubmit a new application. Withdrawing your application allows you the ability to start from scratch and resubmit a new application. Withdrawing an application does not affect your eligibility to receive a grant, nor will it be a factor that will count against you.
Please note, should you chose to withdraw an application, you will need to submit a new application before the deadline of 5:00 PM Pacific Time Friday, April 9th, 2021 to be eligible.
All applications need to be submitted before this deadline regardless if you have withdrawn an application or not. Should you choose to withdraw your application after 5:00 PM Pacific Time Friday, April 9th, 2021, you choose to remove your application from consideration for the grant award.
Q: Why will the grant amounts vary?
A: Once an application is approved, Commerce will have to confirm whether or not the business has received a prior Working Washington grant and then reduce the new grant amount by that total. This is required by the legislature in HB 1368, which appropriated the funding for this program. A maximum award per applicant for this Working Washington grant round is $25,000.
Q: Is this grant taxable income?
A: Your accountant can advise you of any tax obligations, but these grants are not subject to business and occupation (B&O) tax, public utility tax, or retail sales tax (per HB 1095 which exempts the receipt of “qualifying grant” funds from certain taxes).
Qualifying grants include the three rounds of Working Washington grants and any grants that are received from the government, or another organization authorized to distribute government grants, and are meant to address the impacts of a national or state declaration of emergency. This includes national or state declarations occurring since February 29, 2020 (e.g., the declaration of emergency issued due to the COVID-19 pandemic).
Q: Does anything need to be repaid?
A: No, these grants do not need to be repaid. However, all taxes associated with the acceptance and/or uses of cash awarded are the sole responsibility of the individual grantee. Please contact your financial advisor or the Department of Revenue for questions related to your own situation.
Q: What kind of reporting will be required as a recipient of these funds?
A: There will be no reporting requirement. However, each awardee will be required to sign an agreement and complete bank wire instructions to receive the funding if and when awarded. The agreement will re-certify the self-attest statements you made on the application, along with other provisions regarding the program and what documents the business should retain.
There is no need to provide any proof of receipts to Commerce, however, successful grantees will have to attest that they will use the funding in accordance with the requirements of the law. Please see “What can I use this money for and when does it have to be spent by?” to learn more about the parameters of this funding.
Q: Will receiving a grant impact other federal assistance or unemployment insurance eligibility?
A: You will need to check with those assistance providers.
Q: What is expected of me after I receive the award?
A: There is no need to provide any proof of receipts to Commerce, however, successful grantees will have to attest that they will use the funding in accordance with the requirements of the law. Please see “What can I use this money for and when does it have to be spent by?” to learn more about the parameters of this funding.
Q: How long will it take for a successful applicant to receive an award and in what format?
A: Once all submissions are reviewed, awardees will be notified via email to take next steps in the granting process by mid-May. They will be asked to sign a grant agreement and provide their bank information. Once both the grant agreement is signed and their banking information is verified, grant awardees can expect to receive payment via direct deposit within a few business days.
this money for and when does it have to be spent by?” to learn more about the parameters of this funding.
Q: How will funds be distributed?
A: Commerce’s partner will be using a direct bank transfer of funds referred to as an ACH. Knowing your correct business bank account and routing number for your bank branch is critical to successfully obtaining funds.
Q: What can I use this money for and when does it have to be spent?
A: Successful grantees must use the funding for costs incurred between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021, as required by HB 1368. Awardees are able to expend grant funding for any eligible expenses due to the impact of COVID-19 as long as they have not been previously funded through other grant awards.
If all responses for the particular incurred cost are “true” for all five statements below, then the applicant can feel confident the cost is eligible:
- The expense is connected to the COVID-19 emergency.
- The expense is “necessary” to continue business operations.
- The expense is not to be used to pay government-related feeds (i.e. taxes, licenses, state, county, federal, and/or city fees).
- The Business will self–attest that the expense is not funded by any other funder, whether private, State or Federal.
- The business wouldn’t be requesting assistance with expenses if they had not been impacted by COVID-19.
Any expenses outside of the March 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021 timeframe would not be considered reimbursable. Commerce is not requesting receipts as a part of the grant award, but, in the event of an audit, the business must show proof of expenditures.
Q: Can the funds be used for future expenses (next year) or just current expenses?
A: The funds must be spent on expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 as set by the state legislature, in HB 1368.
Q: What expenses are classified as ineligible expenses?
A: Ineligible expenses include:
- Alcohol (other than for inventory needs of their business)
- Salary increases, bonuses, and dividends to owner(s) or investor(s)
- Costs already reimbursed previously by federal programs (e.g. SBA Paycheck Protection Program) or expenses previously reimbursed by any of grant or loan program
- Personal expenses
Q: Which previous grants will be deducted from what I am eligible to receive this time?
A: Working Washington Grants: Rounds 1, 2, and 3 will/may reduce the amount offered in Working Washington Grants: Round 4. The Business Resiliency grant and other local grants will not impact the total amount received in this new round.
Q: Will you provide the application questions in languages other than English?
A: Yes, but the applicant is required to apply to the questions in English. The application questions will be translated ahead of the application portal opening on Commerce’s website. The languages included are: Amharic, Arabic, Bosnian, Chinese, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, Thai, Ukrainian and Vietnamese.
Please visit our Small Business Resiliency Network of trusted community partners page to learn more about other language support assistance that Commerce offers in conjunction with its statewide partners.
Q: Will there be more grant opportunities?
A: There may be additional small business funding provided through federal or state government action. If additional grant funding becomes available through the Department of Commerce, the information will be updated on the Department’s website. Please visit COVID-19 Business Resources for Washington State to learn more.
Q: Why do only brick and mortar businesses qualify for this grant program?
A: Businesses that operate out of a location that is not their home face higher costs and were more likely to be required by public health measures to completely close or significantly reduce or modify operations. The intent is to assist businesses struggling with those costs. Examples include paying rent and utilities for a business location despite being closed, or paying for costly modifications such as plastic barriers/partitions, outdoor tents and frequent sanitation.
We know home-based businesses have also endured hardships. Every Commerce grant program has had different requirements, whether set by the legislature or because of the most apparent economic impacts. This program is a combination of both, abiding by HB 1368 while also focusing on businesses that have faced particular hardship due to Proclamations 20-25.8-20-25.12.
Q: What do you mean by a brick-and-mortar location?
A: For purposes of this grant program, a brick-and-mortar establishment is one that operates from a permanent physical location where the business serves customers face to face and carries on the majority of its managerial and day-to-day operations of the business.
Businesses that operate exclusively through a mobile operation, such as a mobile food stand, food trucks, vending machines, mobile food service provision, or other mobile structure are not considered a brick-and-mortar business. In addition, businesses in a structure on the same property as the home of the business owner(s) are considered home-based and not eligible for this grant program.
Rental of a storage unit to store business equipment/products to support your business activities, are not considered a physical brick-and-mortar business location for the purposes and intent of this grant round.
Q: I don’t have a physical brick-and-mortar location, but I sell my products in shared retail spaces and/or at markets and event pop-ups. Am I eligible?
A: No, the purpose of this grant program is to support brick-and-mortar businesses which have larger fixed expenses.
Q: My business operates out of a shared workspace. Am I eligible to apply for a grant?
A: Businesses that make use of co-working spaces to meet clients or showcase their products are not eligible for this grant program. This grant program has been specifically designed to help business owners who own or lease a brick-and-mortar location, from which they showcase and sell goods and services.
Q: My business includes “pop-up shops” and I temporarily rent space from a retail store and coffee shop in order to display and sell goods. Am I eligible to apply for the grant?
A: Businesses that sub-lease small parts of other retail establishments such as coffee shops or clothing boutiques for the purpose of showcasing products (commonly referred to as pop-ups or pop-up shops) are not eligible to apply. This grant program has been specifically designed to help business owners who own or lease a brick-and-mortar location, from which they showcase and sell goods and services.
Q: My business made under $25,000 in revenue in 2019. Do I qualify?
A: No, the purpose of this grant program is to support brick-and-mortar businesses which have larger fixed expenses.
Q: Why is the maximum revenue threshold set at $5 million?
A: The legislature set this amount in HB 1368, stating that the qualifying businesses are “those whose gross revenue was under $5 million for 2019.”
Q: I don’t have a UBI number, do I still qualify?
A: Because the program requires applicants to submit a 2019 federal tax return, every eligible small business should have a UBI number. If you are a tribal-member owned business, you may provide alternative business validation such as your license or registration with a federally recognized tribal nation instead of a UBI number.
Q: I am a sole proprietor and don’t have an EIN. Am I still eligible for this grant?
A: Yes, please select the option on the application form noting that you do not have an EIN. You are not required to provide your social security number on the application. You are still required to have a UBI unless you are a tribal-member owned business that is licensed or registered with a federally recognized tribal nation.
Q: Do I still qualify for this grant if I received a PPP and/or EIDL loan from the federal government?
A: Yes. Though we ask applicants to provide this information, it will not change your eligibility or affect the review of your application.
Q: I own multiple businesses. Can I apply for each business?
A: Only one grant is allowed per UBI. If a business owner has multiple businesses with unique UBI numbers for each, they may qualify for more than one Working Washington Round 4 grant.
Q: Do I need to use my designated NAICs assigned to me when selecting which sector/industry my business falls under?
A: Yes, if you have been assigned a code you must use it. If you don’t know your NAICS code, you can look up your code here.
Q: Do religious organizations qualify?
A: No, religious organizations do not qualify for this grant program. However, if their primary function (source of revenue) is within a sector that is eligible, they may apply. Examples include overnight camps, music venues or a restaurant.
Q: Does it matter how many employees I have to be eligible for this grant?
A: No, there are no employee number minimums or maximums for this grant program. The business only needs to be recognized as a small business based on the eligibility criteria.
Q: Are marijuana-based businesses eligible?
A: No, marijuana-licensed businesses in the state of Washington are not eligible for these federally funded grants. However, CBD retailers do qualify as they are not the same as marijuana/cannabis.
Q: Do I qualify if I am a driver of a shared-ride company (like Uber or Lyft) or host/operator of a vacation or short-term rental unit (like Airbnb or VRBO)?
A: No, this current grant program does not extend to any drivers of a shared-ride company or host/operator of a vacation or short-term rental unit like Airbnb or VRBO.
Q: What if I haven’t completed my 2020 federal tax return yet?
A: If you do not have any documentation for your 2020 federal tax returns, please provide an annual revenue estimate that is as accurate as possible and attest to the truthfulness of the statement. You will be considered for this grant if you provide either an accurate revenue estimate or your filed 2020 return.
Q: Do I have to provide a Social Security Number to apply?
A: Commerce does not require a social security number to apply for this grant, but a 2019 federal tax return is required and a 2020 federal tax return is highly recommended. You are encouraged to black out your social security number if it is on your return before you upload these documents.
Q: Do Individual Taxpayer Identification Number operated businesses qualify?
A: Non-U.S. citizens who are small business owners and do not have a Social Security number may apply using their Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). Therefore, small business owners with federal tax IDs of nine digits and beginning with “9” are eligible for this grant program.
Q: How do I know if my contractor license is in good standing with the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries?
A: Please learn more by visiting the department’s website.
Q: Can my government-issued ID be expired?
A: No. It must be valid and in current standing.
Q: Do taxi drivers or transportation services qualify?
A: This depends on the type of business. If they have a “physical brick and mortar location”, as highlighted in the requirements to apply, then they are eligible. If the business owner’s place of business is the vehicle (or boat) itself, then they do not qualify for this particular grant program.
Q: How do I report revenue and revenue loss for sole proprietors (who don’t have a Profit & Loss Statement)?
A: Review your Schedule C of your 1040 2019 tax return as well as look at your business bank account information and other documents used to complete your most recent tax return. A profit and loss statement is not required to be uploaded for this grant program.
Q: What types of healthcare providers are eligible for Working Washington Grants: Round 4?
A: Personal service providers, such as acupuncturists, chiropractors, massage therapists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, cranial-sacral therapists, art therapists and doulas are eligible for this grant program.
However, many healthcare providers such as physicians, surgeons, dentists, psychologists and psychoanalysts are not eligible for this particular grant program.
Q: What types of professional services are ineligible for Working Washington: Round 4?
A: For this grant round, professional services that specialize in performing professional, scientific, or technical services for others do not qualify. This includes but is not limited to legal advice and representation, accounting and payroll services, architectural or engineering services, computer services, consulting or research services, advertising services and other professional, scientific, or technical work.
Q: What types of agriculture and aquaculture are ineligible for Working Washington Grants: Round 4?
A: Agriculture and aquaculture services directly related to production are not eligible for this program. This includes but is not limited to farm raising, animal production of any kind, farming, sea plant agriculture, plant aquaculture, animal aquaculture, and harvesting of any kind.
However, Commerce has partnered with the Washington State Department of Agriculture to provide COVID-19 recovery grants for certain sectors of the agriculture industry to bolster the health and diversity of Washington’s economy. The eligible sectors include:
- Small-scale shellfish growers
- Farmers market organizations
- Agritourism farms
- Small breweries, cideries, wineries, and distilleries (when dependent upon on-premise sales through taprooms or tasting rooms).
Visit www.agr.wa.gov/grants for more information.
Q: What type of child care services qualify for Working Washington Grants: Round 4?
A: Licensed child care providers, including centers and family homes, do not qualify for this round of Commerce small business grants. In HB 1368, $50 million was appropriated to provide support solely for financial support to licensed child care providers through the Department of Children, Youth, and Families. This is the same legislation that appropriated $240 million for Commerce’s Working Washington Grants: Round 4 program.
Q: What are the requirements to apply in order to be eligible for this grant program?
A: To be considered for this grant, an applicant must be:
- Active for-profit business or individual DBA located in Washington state (“does business as”.) Businesses can only apply for one location per business (identified by UBI or EIN).
- Has been in business before January 1, 2020 and filed a 2019 federal tax return
- Generates at least 51% of revenue in Washington state
- Operates from a physical brick and mortar location in Washington state (separate from owner’s home)
- Reported gross annual revenue between $25,000 and $5,000,000 in 2019
- Experienced a decrease in revenue and/or incurred additional costs between 2019 and 2020 due to COVID-19 public health and safety measures
Q: What documentation is required for this application?
A: Applicants will need:
- Copy of filed 2019 federal tax return
- 2020 federal tax return, if filed. If 2020 documents are not available, the business owner must attest and estimate amount of annual gross revenues.
- Washington State Unified Business Identifier (UBI)* number (check this website to make sure your business license is active and in good standing).
- *Tribal member-owned businesses without a UBI may provide alternative business validation such as a license or registration with a federally recognized tribal nation.
- Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN), if applicable
- Valid Government-issued photo ID
- Completed W-9 form (digital copy accepted)
Q: Who is ineligible to apply?
A: The following business/organization types are not eligible to apply for this round of grants:
- Non-profit business or organization
- Child care provider (not including recreation/entertainment)
- School (Pre-K, K-12 and higher education)
- Hospital/Healthcare provider (personal services such as massage and chiropractors ARE eligible)
- Property management/Real estate (including owners or operators of short-term rental properties)
- Professional Services (accounting, insurance, legal, financial services/firms, architects etc.)
- Agriculture & aquaculture producer (such as farms and ranchers)
- Licensed marijuana/cannabis operation (this does not include CBD retailers)
- Drivers of shared ride companies (g., Lyft or Uber)
- Host/operator of a vacation or short-term rental unit (like Airbnb or VRBO)
- Government entities or elected official offices
- Passive business, investment companies and investors who file a Schedule E on their personal tax returns
- Financial business primarily engaged in the business of lending, such as banks, finance company and factoring company
- Businesses that have permanently closed or intend to permanently close in 2021
- Businesses engaged in any socially undesirable activity or activity that may be considered predatory in nature (such as rent-to-own businesses and check cashing businesses)
- Businesses of a prurient sexual nature (“adult” businesses)
- Speculative businesses
- Businesses primarily engaged in political or lobbying activities
- Businesses without a physical location in Washington state
- Businesses that restrict patronage for any reason other than capacity or age restrictions per regulations
- Businesses found to be in violation of any COVID-19-related order issued by the governor. This includes remaining open when ordered to close, or disregarding COVID-19 health or safety measures applicable to the business.
- Businesses found to have compliance or regulatory issues as of March 2020
- Businesses that are actively engaged in current/pending lawsuits
- Businesses disbarred by the federal government
- Businesses actively pursuing a bankruptcy declaration