The Department of Housing and Community Development Announces Grant Opportunity

Grant applications are now being accepted to support local microenterprise businesses

Reading, MA — The Town of Reading today announces that applications are being accepted online for the Microenterprise grant. This grant program is part of the $19.6 million award through the federally-funded Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program through the CARES Act of 2020. The $4,950,000 grant from the Department of Housing & Community Development was awarded to assist small businesses in 23 cities and towns across the Metropolitan Boston Region, including the Town of Reading. The Town of Reading has received $210,000 to support microenterprise businesses in the community

The funding is being utilized to address emergency needs in light of the Coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, the grant award for these 23 communities will be utilized to award individual grants. Award amounts are up to $10,000 per business with demonstrated costs greater than or equal to the amount requested. Grants can be requested in increments of $5,000, $7,5000 or $10,000. A microenterprise is defined as a commercial enterprise that has 5 or fewer employees, 1 or more of whom owns the enterprise, and must be a for-profit entity. 

Funds may be used for working capital to cover business costs, such as rent, staffing, and utilities. Funds may also be used for purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE). 

Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (“MGCC”) will be helping to administer and oversee the grant program. For more information about eligibility requirements and to apply to this grant visit: Applications are due by September 25, 2020 at 5:00pm. Businesses interested in applying must complete and submit the application electronically through MGCC’s online application portal. Hard copies or electronic copies submitted in any other way, such as mailed or emailed, will not be considered. 

The communities that are part of this coalition include: Ashland, Beverly, Burlington, Canton, Concord, Dedham, Essex, Lexington, Manchester by the Sea, Marlborough, Melrose, Milton, Natick, North Reading, Norwood, Randolph, Reading, Sharon, Southborough, Stoneham, Watertown, Winchester or Woburn.

For questions, please contact Erin Schaeffer, Town of Reading Economic Development Director at or contact MGCC at

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