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PETS grant program ends after helping 9,400 small businesses survive pandemic

Small businesses and non-profits benefit from PETS grant program.{ }
Small businesses and non-profits benefit from PETS grant program.
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The last of the Pandemic Emergency Technical Support (PETS) grant program money will go out to businesses in the coming days but Governor Steve Sisolak said in a roundtable, officials are not done helping small businesses because their struggles are ongoing.

"Over the next few months, we're going to engage in a series of thoughtful conversations with business owners throughout the state of Nevada," said Gov. Sisolak. "Through these conversations, we'll be able to understand the challenges that these businesses are facing every single day, but also work to find solutions to these problems and provide our businesses with the support they need to succeed."

Treasurer Zach Conine was also at the the roundtable with small business owners and said, "We're closing out the PETS program but we know the work is not done yet. The speed and trajectory of Nevada's economic recovery are going to be based on small business success. Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and they will be the lifeblood of our recovery."

The PETS program launched in October 2020 with $20 million in federal coronavirus relief funds to give more flexible grant money to small businesses so they could pay rent, utilities and payroll.

It grew to $100 million dollars and helped about 9,400 small businesses in Nevada.

A breakdown of grant awards:

  • Disadvantaged businesses, defined as women, Veteran, minority or disability-owned: 4,907 (52 percent)
  • Bars and restaurants: 685 (7 percent)
  • Chambers of commerce: 31 (0.3 percent)
  • Non-profits: 657 (7 percent)
  • Arts and culture: 276 (3 percent)
  • Other businesses: 2832 (30 percent)

"This is likely the most equitable small business program in the entire country," Gov. Sisolak said referencing the amount given to disadvantaged businesses. "It ensured that businesses that traditionally have been left behind, were able to access much needed funds during the pandemic."

Governor Sisolak and Treasurer Conine also said the PETS program was the largest small business assistance program in the state's history.

"I’m incredibly proud of the work that was done through this program, but we still have more work to do." Conine said, "That’s why we’re committed to talking to business owners across the State through the Every Nevadan Recovery Framework to find solutions to rebuild our economy stronger than ever before.”

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Some of the challenges already brought up by small business owners in the roundtable discussion include hiring, language barriers and keeping owners up to date on permits and paperwork.

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