Helping small businesses in Kalamazoo.

Resources

MRLA Launches Relief Grants

The Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association (MRLA) has created a $409 million fund in the Michigan Treasury to aid businesses that were severely impacted by pandemic related restrictions and closures. To qualify for a grant, an afflicted business must demonstrate a decline in total sales in 2020 in relation to their 2019 sales, including any revenue received via forgiven Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans or Restaurant Revitalization Funds.

What businesses qualify?

An afflicted business is any business that is not tax exempt under that Internal Revenue Code, is not a government entity, and is one of the following:

  • A food service establishment
  • A hotel or bed and breakfast
  • An entertainment venue
  • An exercise facility
  • A recreation facility or place of public amusement
  • A cosmetologist, barber, cosmetology shop or barber shop
  • A nursery or nursery dealer
  • An athletic trainer

The Michigan Department of Treasury must post applications by March 1, 2022 and all applications must be received by April 1, 2022.

Contact Information

Congratulations to Gregory Shelton of Grand Unique Laundry for receiving his first loan through Northern Initiatives. With help from his SCORE mentor, Cheri Bales, Gregory did a fantastic job on developing his business plan and showing real entrepreneurial spirit. We wish you much success, and look forward to your upward movement. You are a wonderful role model.

—Gregory Shelton of Grand Unique Laundry

I appreciate your ears for listening, your eyes that see my vision and your heart that makes you who you are.  I thank you for your time. You are making a difference.

—Shawntel Lindsey, Director, The Artbor Community Connections Center

The WMed Innovation Center is a perfect environment for innovation to grow and become a successful commercial enterprise.

—Client

WMU Business Connection logo

Whether you are seeking a research partner or want to enlist the help of student groups in developing business plans, or just looking for ways to engage with WMU, the Business Connection office can find the resource to help move your business forward.

—Mentor

A loan (from Local Initiatives Support Corporation) helped expand our cafe to triple our seating, add a kids space, increase much needed staff work areas, and make other improvements to the space.

—Krystal

MEL logo

The Michigan eLibrary (MeL) is the State of Michigan’s digital library. It has excellent resources available to Michigan residents at no cost.

—Owner

Western Michigan University’s Starting Gate helped me take an idea and transform it into a much more attainable reality. Whether providing talks with investors and business owners or accountability, the ultimate goal is helping your business succeed.

—Peter Shutt

Kalamazoo County Land Bank logo

The Kalamazoo Land Bank did robust community engagement around the vision and gave us something to work with that was solidly desired by people in the neighborhood. Having a vision meant we had to protect it. That’s something I thank the Land Bank for. It was difficult. It didn’t make anything faster or easier, but we got a better project in the end as a result of it.

—Matt Hollander

Buy Local logo

Buy Local Greater Kalamazoo is a hard working grassroots group focused on the greater Kalamazoo community and its small businesses. Their events and networking opportunities are the best!

—Cheri Bales

SBDC logo

Michigan SBDC is a great company providing top notch service to local businesses all over Michigan. The consultants are professional and the student workers contribute with excellent work!

—Martin Herman Sorensen

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