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County Executive's Office

Dane County Increases Funding for Small Business Pandemic Support Grant Program to $800,000 Following Overwhelming Community Interest

April 06, 2020
Ariana Vruwink, 608-267-8823
County Executive

Funds Will Help More Small Businesses in Dane County Stay Afloat During COVID-19 Pandemic

Today, County Executive Joe Parisi announced that Dane County will increase funding for its Small Business Pandemic Support Grant Program to $800,000 following overwhelming community interest the last few days. The new grant program was announced Wednesday, April 1 and started out at $250,000. By Thursday evening, Dane Buy Local had received 800 grant applications from local businesses. By more than tripling the funding total, Dane County and Dane Buy Local hope to help even more local businesses survive the COIVD-19 public health crisis, which has caused many to temporarily close their doors.

“I’m pleased to be able to increase funding for the Dane County Small Business Pandemic Support Grant Program to help more small businesses stay afloat during this challenging time,” said County Executive Joe Parisi. “We want local businesses to know we stand with them and support them. We encourage small business owners throughout Dane County to apply for this funding to help retain employees and cover expenses.”

A total of $800,000 will be available through this grant program to support small businesses throughout Dane County with employee retention and to mitigate losses from the COVID-19 pandemic. Dane Buy Local will administer the grants and has​ information about the County’s grant program on their website There, business owners will be able to fill out a Google form to learn more information and apply. Grants as small as $1,000 will be awarded. Applications will be accepted through June 15, 2020.

“The support for local businesses is increasing significantly from Dane County and County Executive Joe Parisi with their notification that additional funds will be put toward the small business relief program,” said Colin Murray, Executive Director of Dane Buy Local. “We commend Dane County’s efforts, recognizing that the big winners of this commitment will be small local businesses, who continue to work hard to keep their business viable during these health and economic crises.”

A resolution recognizing this agreement between Dane County and Dane Buy Local was adopted by the County Board at last Thursday’s meeting. A resolution recognizing this increase in grant funding is expected to be approved by the Board in the coming weeks. If business owners have questions about the grant program, they can call 608-712-3440 or email

“Realizing that the County Board approved this program in concept at our last meeting, the reality that the need is so much greater justifies an increase in funding at this point in time. Businesses across Dane County need our help,” said Dane County Board Chair Analiese Eicher. “That we can take this action quickly together is yet another example of Dane County leaders coming together in these trying times.”