NAPLES, Fla -- As Southwest Florida continues to rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic, Collier County is offering another financial assistance program for residents and business owners.
Online applications for the Collier Community Assistance Program(CCAP) will open at noon on Monday. It’s intended to help those financially impacted by the pandemic.
Small businesses who meet the criteria will be able to get a one-time grant of up to $25,000. Nonprofits and agricultural operations can also get help. The money is for those behind on utility payments or who need help repaying the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).
As for who’s eligible on the business side, you must have a business tax license, hold a Sunbiz registration, and employ 100 or fewer full-time equivalent staff. For past due water and electric bill assistance, the utility account must be in the name of your business.
Food banks and pantries can also apply for assistance. The county said they should reach out to the Community Foundation of Collier County.
That’s just the start of who CCAP will be able to help. A big part of the program is offering assistance to residents of Collier County who are behind on mortgage, rent, and utility bills.
According to the county, aid is available for households with past due bills going back to March 13, 2020. You must have been current on your rent or mortgage at that time. It's available up to $10,000 and can also be used for utility relief.
The county applicants will also be screened for benefits through the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program, which does not have a cap on funds and only assists with rent payments through Fall 2021. It said doing this will allow it to help more people. If applicants do not qualify for aid through the CCAP, they may qualify through the ERA and vice versa.
Fox 4 has additional resources to help you rebound from the pandemic here.
When it comes to CCAP, the county said relief will be open on an ongoing basis this year or until funds are depleted, whichever happens first. It's also available on a first-come, first-qualified basis which means you should get your application in as soon as possible. The county is also opening an office on Monday for anyone who needs help after applying. It will be located at 13245 Tamiami Trail East, Suite 102, in Naples. Appointments are required. The county said you should call (239) 450- 2114 to set up an appointment or email CCAPinfo@colliercountyfl.gov. You will be required to wear a mask to your appointment.