Wausau CARES Assists City of Wausau Small Businesses to Get Back to Business

(Note – if your business is not located in the City of Wausau you cannot apply for any of these grants and/or forgivable loans. We will update you if grants for all of Marathon County become available.)

Businesses must be based in the City of Wausau which suffered financial losses as a result of circumstances stemming from the Covid-19 pandemic may now apply for Wausau CARES program IT grants business grants, and loans to help recover and remain open for business.

The City’s additional Wausau CARES funds is providing essential funding to Wausau City-based businesses to assist with payroll, marketing, rent/lease payments, utility bills, inventory, and health and safety improvements to businesses (See application for complete listing).

Funding for the program comes from Community Development Block Grant dollars provided to the City as part of the federal government’s Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Acts I, II, and III. The funds will be distributed locally through a partnership with MCDEVCO, Inc. as the fund administrator.  No city taxpayer dollars were used for this business reinvigoration initiative.

The Wausau Cares program includes:

  • Small business grants of $1,500 each;
  • IT grants of $2,500.00 each for software, equipment, website and/or update, photography, IT education – review the application for a complete list;
  • Another series of potentially forgivable loans up to amounts of $20,000 based upon workforce and payroll retention.

Criteria for business eligibility to receive Wausau Cares grant and/or loan include:

  • Business must have been in operation as of March 25, 2020.
  • Business MUST be physically located in the City of Wausau. If a business has other locations, grant funds can only be used for business expenses at its Wausau location.
  • Business must either have been closed as nonessential or had operations severely limited by the State of Wisconsin Safer-at-Home orders and continue to struggle to remain open.
  • Business must have 10 or fewer full-time equivalent employees as of March 25, 2020.
  • Home-based businesses, independent contractors, and sole proprietor firms are eligible.
  • Property management, real estate rental and real estate sales businesses are not eligible. No franchises or non-property per HUD regulations.
  • Businesses already receiving funds from the SBA’s Payroll Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, disaster insurance claim, and/or a financial loan cannot duplicate funding.  Funding requires filling out a duplication of services affidavit form.
  • Eligibility does not guarantee a grant and/or loan will be made. The City of Wausau and MCDEVCO, Inc. may modify, condition or deny any request at its sole discretion.

MCDEVCO, Inc. will award Wausau CARES grants and loans on a first-come basis until the funds are depleted.  Businesses will be able to apply for grant or loan assistance until funds are depleted. Applications are available online through MCDEVCO’s website at mcdevco.org, by calling MCDEVCO at 715.298.0084 or email info@mcdevco.org.