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Lathrop makes $500K available for small firms hit by pandemic

The City of Lathrop is doing everything in its power to make sure businesses and families do not struggle during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier this month, the council voted to approve a pair of grants that will provide lump sum payments for eligible businesses and families that are funded through a variety of means – none of which needs to be paid back – and is intended to help offset the costs associated with rent, utilities, and expenses associated with the unforeseen health crisis.

The city’s Small Business Assistance Grant Program provides up to $5,000 for small businesses with no less than 3 and no more than 20 employees that can be used to pay rent, payroll, utilities, and inventory or equipment related to the business. Funded through Measure D – a fee that was set-up in the River Islands development to support economic development in the city – the grant will be a one-time allotment provided on a first-come, first-served basis until the balance of the $500,000 in the account is depleted.

Helping keep small businesses alive during the pandemic is part of the city’s effort to ensure that the services that residents depend on remain even as the economy takes a major hit.

“The Novel Coronavirus has created unprecedented circumstances, we must work together to protect human lives while balancing our ability to maintain our livelihoods and provide for our families,” Lathrop Mayor Sonny Dhaliwal said about the program. “Council and staff are working hard to meet the governor’s demands to slow the spread of the virus.

“At the same time, we are working on a plan for re-opening and recovery. The City Council has recently approved two grant programs that will assist small businesses and families most in need.”

For families that need assistance during these trying times, the council also approved the Emergency General Assistance Grant which provides up to $3,200 for households to assist with rent and utilities. The city is using the $92,000 provided to it by the Department of Housing and Urban Development through the Community Development Block Grant program to help struggling families, and the funds will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis until all of the funds are exhausted.

Those interested in filing the applications necessary to secure funding can receive the assistance of city staff by calling the city’s Emergency Operations Center at 209.941.5111 or can do it online at the city’s website at

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.