St. Paul offers tourism industry $4.5 million in relief grants, application deadline March 28

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The city of St. Paul has $4.5 million from the U.S. federal bailout to spur tourism recovery, but the deadline for organizations to apply is fast approaching. Applications are due March 28.

In a written statement, officials from the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development said the “Tourism Recovery Support” program is designed to provide grants to organizations “able to demonstrate that their normal pre-pandemic operations have a significant impact on tourism in St. Paul” and attract more than 40,000 visitors a year to the city.

They must be able to demonstrate that the pandemic has caused them negative economic impacts that currently “threaten the solvency of the organization” or have had a “profound impact” on operations.

Eligible organizations had been in operation for at least six months prior to March 1, 2020. The application requests financial documentation from 2019 to present, including an operating plan showing how the emergency funding will help them recover financially and will help the city’s tourism industry. .

Organizations that have already received grants from one of the three programs are not eligible to apply: Department of Jobs and Development Main Street Cultural Mall Operator COVID Relief Grant Program Economic Community of Minnesota (DEED), the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Closed Site Operator Program, and the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Restaurant Revitalization Fund.

Restaurants, hotels, travel agencies, ride-sharing companies, limousines, taxis, airlines, professional sports teams, and city, county, or state-operated museums and attractions, such as the Minnesota History Museum and the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory.

Other awards or sources of funding will be considered in the final determination of grant amounts, depending on the city.

More information is online at stpaul.gov/tourismrecovery.

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