The Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism, the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, and the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration received approval to proceed with a grant program utilizing $50 million in CARES Act funds for Arkansas businesses in industries significantly impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency.

The Arkansas Legislative Council this morning approved a business interruption grant for certain Arkansas businesses in the personal care, tourism, travel, recreation, and hospitality industries. The grant will provide reimbursement for a portion of specific eligible expenses incurred by businesses in these industries between March 1 and Sept. 30, 2020.

The grant application period will open Monday, Nov. 16, and close Wednesday, Nov. 25. Grants will be awarded on a prorated basis depending on the total number of applicants and the amount of reimbursement requested. The program anticipates making grant awards in late December.

Arkansas small businesses having 250, or fewer, full-time employees located in Arkansas may seek reimbursement for expenses associated with COVID-19 mitigation or certain listed business interruption expenses due directly to local, state, or federal government COVID-19 directives.

Information will be regularly posted to www.ArkansasReady.com about the grant, the application period, training, and a helpline.