New York Forward Fund Eligibility Expansion
New York State has once again announced the expansion of the New York Forward Loan Fund in an effort to further assist small businesses, non-profits and residential landlords impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The working capital loans of up to $100,000 are designed to support businesses and organizations as they reopen and have upfront expenses in order to comply with guidelines (inventory, marketing, refitting for social distancing guidelines) under the New York Forward Plan. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The new criteria for small businesses and non-profits to apply now includes:

  • Employ 50 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees;
  • Have gross revenues of less than $5 million per year;
  • Must not have received a U.S. Small Business Administration Paycheck Protection Program of greater than $500,000 or an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) for COVID-19 of greater than $150,000;
  • Have suffered a direct economic hardship as a result of COVID-19 related social distancing policies and stay-at-home orders that have impacted their operations;
  • Been in business for at least 1 year as of the date of the application; and
  • Be located in the State of New York.

More information regarding the loan terms, business requirements, frequently asked questions, and pre-application submission can be found here.

As always the NCCC Small Business Development Center is available to offer FREE loan application guidance or to assist you with the application process. You can request business assistance through their website at, or contact them directly at (716) 210-2515 or at
Shuttered Venue Relief Program Webinar
Are you a theatrical producer, talent representative, venue promoter or do you operate a live venue, live performing arts organization, movie house or cultural institution and have been impacted by COVID-19? If so, register for SBA’s webinar on Thursday, January 14th, at 3:00 p.m. for a preliminary overview of the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program included in the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act recently passed by Congress.

Eligible organizations with a reduction in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic will have the opportunity to receive up to a $10 million grant under the program.

This webinar will provide introductory information about the grants, who can apply, how potential organizations can prepare, and additional details regrading eligibility and applications. See the link to register below.
Please note that we are still awaiting guidance regarding the Targeted Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Advance Program. When that information becomes available we will share it with you.
Concord Grape Grower Survey
Cornell University is working on a study funded by the New York Department of Agriculture & Markets to identify market opportunities for alternative products based on concord grapes. The study aims to benefit concord growers by providing information on new value-added processes and products based on concord grapes. As part of the project, the researchers hope to receive insights from concord growers regarding current production and marketing challenges, as well as responses of growers to different market conditions. The researchers designed a short online mobile-friendly survey, and are requesting your help by answering the survey. The responses will be summarized and disseminated among concord grape growers in New York State. This survey is part of the larger project which aims at increasing profitability and market demand for concord grapes.
Stay Engaged for the
Latest Businesses Developments
Continue to look for emails from our office in the coming days and weeks updating you on the latest reopening news and what assistance is available to help you through this difficult time. Our staff is working hard to compile a complete list of guidelines, safety protocols and programs that are available. We will also share upcoming webinars and training that you can participate in. To learn more, be sure to visit our website and bookmark it.

Niagara County Center for Economic Development
(716) 278-8750