Gov. Bill Lee announced a new relief program Tuesday for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Tennessee Business Relief Program will direct approximately $200 million in federal coronavirus relief funding through the Department of Revenue to small businesses that qualify. The program awards will be based on the annual gross sales of the business.
Roughly 28,000 Tennessee businesses are expected to qualify according to a release from the state, with more than 73% of those businesses earning annual gross sales of $500,000 or less.
Small businesses eligible under the program include:
Barbershops, beauty shops and nail salons
Tattoo parlors, spas, and other personal care services
Gyms and fitness centers
Restaurants and bars
Hotels and other travel accommodations
Theaters, auditoriums, performing arts centers and similar facilities
Museums, zoos, and other similar attractions
Bowling centers and arcades
Amusement, sports and recreational industries
Promoters of performing arts, sports, and similar events
Agents and managers of artists, athletes, and entertainers
Independent artists, writers, and performers
Certain stores are also eligible if their sales were reduced by at least 25%, as shown on their April sales tax returns that were filed in May.
Those stores include:
Home furnishing stores
Jewelry, luggage and leather goods stores
Sporting goods, hobby and musical instrument stores
Office supply, stationery and gift stores
Used merchandise stores