VENTURA, Calif. - The Ventura County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to approve a $20 million Economic Stabilization and Recovery Program. The programs aim to provide funding to those struggling from the impacts of COVID-19.
The first program is an Economic Stabilization and Recovery Program that includes grants of $5,000 each for small businesses to alleviate impacts from COVID-19. This will help support lease payments, costs for personal protective equipment, purchases related to the operation of businesses.
Program eligibility is limited to businesses with no more than $2 million in annual revenue in either of the two prior years.
The second program is a Housing Assistance Program for residents for families or individuals with past-due rent in order to avoid eviction.
The program will help to stabilize housing for the lowest-income residents and those at greatest risk due to loss of employment, loss of work hours or the inability to work due to child care needs, family/elder care needs, or substantial medical costs due to COVID-19.
The program will provide micro-grants to low-income individuals and families. The grant amount will be based on rental unit size, $1,500 for a studio/1 bedroom and $2,500 for a 2 bedroom or larger, with a maximum of two months of rent owed.
The County’s unemployment rate jumped from 4.6% in March to 14% in April due to the coronavirus-related job losses based on the unemployment data from the state Employment Development Department. Historically, the unemployment rate for the County has remained below 4.5% for the past two years, according to a news release from the county.
With businesses impacted during the public health emergency, over 80,000 Ventura County residents have filed for unemployment since March.