COVID-19 relief funds in the amount of $166,500 are on their way to Goleta residents and small businesses.
During Tuesday’s meeting, the Goleta City Council authorized $166,500 in additional funding toward programs to assist residents and businesses, which will be distributed by United Way of Santa Barbara County and the Santa Barbara Foundation through ongoing partnerships with the city.
United Way’s individual/family assistance grant program will receive $100,000 from Goleta. Grants of $1,000 for individuals and $2,000 for families are available for those experiencing a hardship related to the COVID-19 crisis.
Goleta previously gave $102,000 to this program, but there was a large unmet need for additional funds. Funding will be directed to qualified applicants on the existing waitlist unless and until that list is exhausted.
The Santa Barbara Better Together Fund Small Business Grant Program, which is aimed at helping local businesses survive, was authorized to receive $66,500 from Goleta. The city previously contributed $150,000 to it.
“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our local residents and businesses. While there are encouraging signs pointing to the beginnings of a recovery, there is still a long road ahead and this funding is intended to continue supporting our community via these proven assistance programs,” Goleta Mayor Paula Perotte said in a statement.
The council also approved and adopted the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan at its meeting, and directed staff to develop and issue a request for proposals for an Economic Development Strategic Plan.
The plan outlines COVID-19 relief and assistance aimed at individuals, small businesses and nonprofits, and highlights additional efforts proposed by staff and the Economic Development and Revitalization Committee to provide recovery resources to the Goleta community. The request for proposals for an Economic Development Strategic Plan has a scope which includes an emphasis on restoring Transient Occupancy Tax and Sales Tax revenues by evaluating the sources of Goleta overnight stays and building strategies that most benefit the businesses impacted by the pandemic.
In other business, the council adopted an urgency ordinance to update the city’s COVID-19 eviction moratorium to set the repayment period of deferred rent to Aug. 1, 2021 through Aug. 31, 2021 to match state law.