Decatur DDA approves build out, marketing grants for local businessesDowntown banner on the Decatur Square. Photo by Zoe Seiler.
Decatur, GA — The Decatur Downtown Development Authority, at its Nov. 10 meeting, approved funding for a commercial build out improvement grant program and a marketing and digital connectivity grant program.
The grants aim to support Decatur’s small businesses with improving their buildings and marketing efforts.
The DDA is allocating $75,000 to the commercial build out improvement grant program and $25,000 to the marketing and digital connectivity grant program. The DDA previously established the commercial facade grant program and has seen fewer applications. The facade improvement grant is still being offered quarterly.
The commercial build out improvement grant will help businesses and property owners improve the inside of their buildings.
“The maximum CBIG grant amount is $10,000, and the minimum participation is $2,500. The program would provide a 75/25 matching grant, with 75% of the project expenses reimbursed through the CBIG program, up to $10,000, and 25% of expenses incurred by the applicant,” said Shirley Baylis, business development manager.
Businesses would be reimbursed in the form of a grant after the qualifying project has been finished. The project would have to begin within six months of grant approval and be completed within 18 months of grant approval, Thomas wrote in a memo.
Here is the list of eligible projects that could be reimbursed:
Sprinkler system installation/improvement
Fire alarm system improvement
Grease trap replacement
The grant applications will be reviewed by the same committee that evaluates the commercial facade improvement grants. DDA members Lisa Turner and Darren Comer serve on the review committee.
The marketing and digital connectivity grant program aims to improve businesses’ digital marketing presence by supporting the design and production of digital content and marketing materials, Baylis said.
“The program would offer the opportunity for approved business owners to receive a reimbursement, in the form of a grant,” Baylis said.
A business could receive a maximum of $2,500. Similar to the commercial build out improvement grant, businesses will incur 25% of the expenses and be reimbursed for $75% of the project expenses if they are approved for a grant. The project would have to start within six months of grant approval and be completed within 12 months of grant approval.
“The scope of work that is eligible is the brand and logo design, website design, video shoots or photoshoots, and ad campaigns on Instagram or Facebook [and any additional platforms],” Baylis said.
These grant applications will also be reviewed by a committee that’s made up of two DDA members, the business development manager and the city’s communications manager or staff representative of the city. The DDA selected Noah Peeters and Lisa Turner to serve on the review committee.
For more information about the grants, click here.
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