INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) – The city of Indianapolis and Visit Indy have announced the launch date for the Ready for Winter grant program. The city says the $1 million reimbursement plan is designed for local businesses to enable outdoor dining in the coming winter months.
The program was announced earlier this month along with the $11 million Hospitality Establishment Lifeline Payment grant program for local restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues.
“Outdoor seating continues to be the safest route for restaurants, bars, and venues,” said Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett. “We want to help establishments make any adjustments they can to keep this practice going, and I encourage businesses owners to visit the site in advance of the application process to ensure they are fully prepared to take advantage of these funds.”
The city says the funding is allocated for establishments impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency. The program will reimburse up to $2,500 for expenses related to winter preparedness during the pandemic.
According to the city, this includes the purchase of heaters, outdoor seating capacity, canopies and other necessary PPE.
The application for reimbursement will open Friday and will be available through November 20.
“Continued financial support is critical for our hospitality businesses to get through this pandemic—and the health of the hospitality industry is critical for the health of our economy,” said Leonard Hoops, president of Visit Indy. “Our thanks to the City of Indianapolis for their partnership in this effort. We encourage our fellow residents to continue safely supporting Indy’s restaurants, bars, and live event venues as we all adjust to the changing seasons.”
The reimbursable grants funds can be used for purchases or rentals incurred or paid July 1, 2020 through November 20, 2020.
The city says applicants must meet the following criteria:
- For-profit independently operated restaurants and bars, and live entertainment venues that are subject to Marion County Food & Beverage tax and were forced to shut down or operate at reduced capacity by state or local government as a direct result of a Public Health Order.
- Business must have a properly permitted permanent or temporary outdoor seating area, or if unable to operate an outdoor area, business offers food delivery via a third party.
- Located or headquartered within Marion County.
- Established before February 15, 2020.
The program was made possible through federal CARES Act funding passed by the City-County Council.