McKee awards $four.eight million in grants to broaden outside actions | Nationwide Information


(The Center Square) — Small businesses offering outdoor recreation will see an infusion of grant money, Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee said.

The governor announced As of Monday afternoon, $4.8 million in grants will be awarded through the Rhode Island Rebounds’ Take It Outside initiative. The program uses federal dollars from the American Rescue Plan Act’s State Fiscal Recovery Fund.

“The Take It Outside program was a successful small business program launched during the COVID-19 pandemic as it has enabled businesses to continue operating economically while promoting public health policies that are evolving focused on conducting outdoor activities to limit the spread of the virus,” McKee said in the release. “I’m proud to support the Take It Outside initiative to continue to help our local businesses who have been facing extraordinary challenges since the beginning of the pandemic.”

According to the press release, the initiative will support 21 organizations to help purchase chairs, tables, heaters and tents, as well as preserve outdoor small business opportunities.

Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio, D-Providence, and House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi, D-Warwick, said in the press release, “The federal recovery funds approved under the RI Rebounds program are one way that the State has been working to partner with and support small businesses. The Take It Outside program in particular has been a lifeline for many small businesses. From tables and chairs to heat lamps, the goods and services supported through this program continue to provide a lifeline to help small businesses operate as safely as possible.”

To receive funding under the program, companies must have less than $1 million in annual gross revenue and demonstrate how the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted their business, according to the press release. In addition, 20% of the funds went to minority and women-owned companies.

Grantees include the Rhode Island Hospitality Association in Cranston. The organization will receive up to $637,677 to help the organization purchase materials to promote and increase outdoor activities. The Center for Southeast Asians in Providence will receive up to $643,500 to provide items that increase outdoor operational capabilities and enable public health response.

The East Greenwich Chamber of Commerce in East Greenwich will receive up to $26,000 to host artist markets and support small businesses and buy igloos.