Well, we're back in the purple tier. That may mean an added burden on businesses trying to keep up with the ever-changing times in which we find ourselves, but the cCty of Bakersfield still has you covered. Even eight months into the pandemic, the city has funding to help your business survive, and even thrive as they're now forced to go outdoors.
“I know people probably felt saddened that we are sliding back in that [purple] tier, but there are some things that we’re hopefully doing to mitigate that,” The City of Bakersfield’s Public Information Officer, Joe Conroy said.
For local establishments that may need that extra help: There’s still about two of the $3 million allocated for the B-CARES grant left. Plus, the city has expanded its eligibility requirements this month. Conroy said depending on the size of the business, they can receive $5000 to $20,000 dollars. One-hundred eighty-three applications have been approved so far.
“It doesn’t need to be paid back, because it’s not a loan. Once you’re approved for whatever amount, that’s your money. It’s the businesses' money as long as they meet the requirements of what they’re going to spend it on,” Conroy said.
The city has also put $2 million toward the Kern Recovers Non-Profit Assistance Program. but wait, there's more:
Restaurants, retail, and other local establishments, if you’re looking to move operations outdoors, the city thinks you may benefit from their Special Events Permit. With it allocated street, sidewalk or parking lot space becomes a part of your place of business. One-hundred and five permits have been approved since May.
“We’ll come up with a plan for you, whether it comes to the sidewalk, or your parking lot, wherever it is that you’ll be setting up your outdoor activity, so we’ll work with you on how that should be set up and done safely,” Conroy said.
Churches, gyms and sports associations, the city says you may consider a Special Use Permit through the parks and recreation department. This gives you the ability to use those parks and rec spaces for your respective sessions.
“There are some things that people need to remember: We have maintenance scheduled for parks and stuff, so we don’t want people out there when we’re trying to mow the lawn, or blow the leaves, or sprinkles are turning on something,” Conroy said. “So, we want to make sure things are scheduled around these gatherings or events.”