LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — More than $147 million in requests were submitted for Arkansas grants intended to help businesses comply with new coronavirus safety rules, officials said Thursday, nearly three times the amount set aside for the program.
The Arkansas Economic Development Commission said 12,233 businesses applied for the $55 million Ready for Business grants the state set up using federal coronavirus relief money. The grants can be used for protective equipment, disinfectant and other expenses to comply with rules allowing businesses that have been shuttered during the pandemic to reopen.
The state resumed taking applications Tuesday and Wednesday for the program after legislative leaders approved setting aside additional money for the grants. The state last week stopped taking applications less than an hour into its launch after receiving twice as much in requests as the state had money for the program.
The commission said the results will be presented to a legislative panel on Friday as it considers whether to direct more funds to the program.