Small business owners in Placentia struggling with the pandemic may soon be able to apply for up to $5,000 of relief aid.

The Placentia City Council is scheduled to consider an ordinance Tuesday that would allow up to 34 small businesses in the city to receive $5,000. The specific criteria to qualify for aid includes having no more than 25 full time employees and verifying that aid is necessary because of COVID-19 impacts, among other requirements, according to city staff reports. 

Independent contractors would be eligible to receive aid as long as funds aren’t used for salary, lost profit or lost income. Home based businesses are also eligible but funds could not go to a mortgage or the owner’s salary. 

The city plans to use its $170,000 from the county’s “District 4 Small Business Grant Relief Program” to support small businesses to pay expenses that occur from Nov. 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021. 

Applications for aid will be due on Mar. 1 by 5:00pm. A committee will review and rank each applicant to decide which businesses receive aid. Factors that will impact a businesses’ qualification will include a business description, estimated adverse economic impact affect, needs for fund, budget and documentation.

Throughout the pandemic, Placentia has continued to grapple with the daunting task of helping small businesses survive amid years of trying to figure out how to revise it’s Downtown area which has recently been transformed by the need to offer outside dining.  

In April 2019, The Orange County Supervisors partnered with the city to upgrade Old Town Placentia’s streets, sidewalks, sewers and other infrastructure, marking California’s first county-city redevelopment project

Officials expected the financing district to create roughly 1,600 affordable housing units and attract 125,000 square feet of commercial and retail space. 

When COVID-19 shut down indoor dining across the county, many Orange County cities, including Placentia adapted to make outdoor dining more efficient. Santa Fe Ave no longer made room for incoming traffic by morphing itself into a hub of restaurant tables that redefined the outdoor dining experience. 

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