(CBS DETROIT) – Opening up shop and keeping it open has been a challenge for entrepreneurs.

Since the start of the pandemic many changing their business model to adjust to the times and now Wayne County officials are stepping in to make the process easier.

“We have $50 million that will be allocated from the cares act and that’s the Wayne County portion, then we were awarded another $7.5 million from the M.E.D.C. For basically the same kind of grant and really the same for the most part qualifications apply. And so we’ve got $57.5 million to allocate out,” said Wayne County Assistant Executive Khalil Rahal.

The Wayne County back to work small business grant helps operations with 50 employees or less in good standing with LARA and current on taxes.

The assistance is also afforded to non-profit organizations.

“Most businesses are going to use the money on you know your PPE kind of things, you know, plexiglass, separation of tables, you know some of the physical things that you need you know inside of a business. Sometimes it’s for outdoor seating for more capacity. A lot of the businesses are using it for their employees because they recognize like the hardest thing for them to do is when you lose employees and try to get them back,” said Rahal.

Currently over 1500 businesses have been awarded for the grant that caps off at $20,000.

“And then other businesses are using them for an online platform delivery service. I think that’s what we’re seeing. You know we’re seeing a lot of businesses try to transform their business model to account for the change in times and that transformation can be rocky,” said Rahal.

The deadline to apply ends Aug. 12 but the program could possibly open back up if funds are available.

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