City of Wabash, Grow Wabash County to award OCRA grants to local employers

Wabash County, IN __The City of Wabash, in partnership with Grow Wabash County, has been selected to receive $250,000 each in economic development grant funds from the Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA) to help support businesses in Wabash in need of short-term financial assistance.

Through OCRA’s COVID-19 Response Program, Wabash and North Manchester will be allowed to award grants ranging from $2,000 – $15,000 to Wabash businesses that are retaining low to moderate income (LMI) jobs during the COVID-19 restrictions.

The Town of North Manchester received a $250,000 grant from OCRA earlier this month as well for this purpose, bringing the total to $500,000 in OCRA grant funds being awarded to Wabash County. Grow Wabash County will be administering the grants on behalf of the City of Wabash as well as assist North Manchester with its grant program.

“This pandemic has really called upon entire communities, counties and regions to come together and rally around our local business owners,” Mayor Scott Long said. “We are glad to have the opportunity to provide some financial relief for some of our local employers and, in turn, bring some relief to our local workforce.”

Businesses that employ a workforce consisting of 51% or more of LMI jobs are eligible to receive these funds for specific uses such as working capital, expenses incurred by continuing operations and/or expenses incurred by transitioning the workforce to working remotely.

“As we continue to work through these unprecedented times, Grow Wabash County is humbled to be able to continue to assist our communities with these innovative programs designed to ensure they weather this storm and continue to make Wabash County a great place to be,” said Keith Gillenwater, President and CEO of Grow Wabash County. “We thank OCRA for their continued partnership with our community.”

The applicants will also need to provide proof that they do have the necessary percentage of LMI jobs being retained. After the applications have been received, the grant review committee will work closely with its OCRA Community Liaison to evaluate the applications and determine which applicants will receive the grant funding and how much money will be awarded to them. Awards will be granted on a first come, first serve basis.

Eligible businesses for the City of Wabash can apply online at growwabashcounty.com/COVID19grant.

Details regarding North Manchester’s application process will be made available shortly.

Questions regarding the application process or an employer’s eligibility may be directed to Grow Wabash County by calling 260-563-5258 or by emailing info@growwabashcounty.com.

Download the full press release here.