In the late afternoon of Friday, May 7, 2021, Governor Murphy made two important announcements. 

The first announcement was that the state will make an additional $235 million in funding available through Phase 4 of the Small Business Emergency Grant Program. State officials hope that this additional funding will fulfill all eligible pending Phase 4 small business grant requests. 

In his second announcement, the governor said that New Jersey will create an Excluded New Jerseyans Fund in the form of direct cash assistance to residents who have been previously excluded from other assistance programs.

Small Business Emergency Grant Program Announced

Microbusinesses will be the recipients of the greatest portion of the additional funding released through Phase 4 of the Small Business Emergency Grant Program. In addition, they will have another $120 million made available to them per Governor Murphy’s remarks. This additional funding also includes $25 million for new businesses and startups.

For the purpose of these grants, a microbusiness is defined by the state as a business that has five or fewer employees. If your company qualifies, here is a list of the industry sectors that will be most likely to receive this additional funding and the amount of funding available for companies operating in those niches:

  • Microbusinesses: $120 million
  • New businesses and startups: $25 million
  • Bars and restaurants: $20 million
  • Childcare facilities: $10 million
  • Sustain and Serve program: $10 million
  • Other small businesses and nonprofits: $50 million

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) will have oversight in the administration of these programs — as it has throughout the pandemic.

EDA will begin accepting applications for the extended Phase 4 shortly. We will keep you posted as soon as we know that the EDA is processing applications. 

Excluded New Jerseyans Fund

At the same time as he unveiled the state’s plan to disburse over $235 million part of the Phase 4 roll out of the Small Business Emergency Grant program, Gov. Phil Murphy also announced that the state will allocate $40 million in federal funds for New Jerseyans who have previously been ineligible for federal assistance, including ITIN holders and others previously excluded from COVID relief assistance, such as federal stimulus checks or unemployment insurance.

Small Business Emergency Grant program

Note that the reference to an ITIN holders is regarding an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, which is used by people who do not have a Social Security number, including undocumented workers.

The program, called the Excluded New Jerseyans Fund, will provide a one-time cash assistance benefit of up to $2,000 to households with incomes up to $55,000 that can demonstrate they have suffered economic hardship due to COVID-19.

For more details about these two newest blueprints for economic recovery in the state, please visit ROI-NJ for the original interview and article or contact SobelCo at