Shawnee Forward awards relief fund grants to 33 businesses

Elisabeth Slay
The Shawnee News-Star
Downtown Shawnee.

Shawnee Forward announced Monday in the regular Pottawatomie County Commission meeting that it has awarded grants to 33 out of 64 eligible businesses that applied to its Small Business Relief Fund Program.

According to Shawnee Forward CEO Rachel Melot, grants totaling $105,000 were awarded to 33 businesses that were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and then applied for funding in December.

"The businesses who have been awarded the grants are excited," Melot said.

In the meeting, Melot said the county, Shawnee and Tecumseh provided the funds for the program by allocating money from their CARES Act funds.

Melot also said five people made up the task force evaluating applications and decided which businesses would receive the grants.

"They each invested about 15 hours of their time and the Shawnee Forward staff invested about 20. So about 100 hours were invested into looking over the applications," Melot said.

In addition, Melot said the task force also found that they needed additional funding to award grants to the remaining eligible businesses.

"We stated that the task force identified another $78,000 worth of need within the applicant pool," Melot said. "If the partners wanted to make up that difference, the funds would be awarded to the next in line."

According to District 2 Commissioner Randy Thomas, at the meeting the commissioners passed a motion in which the county would provide $50,000 of the $78,000 needed, contingent upon Shawnee, Tecumseh or both providing the remaining $28,000.

"Shawnee Forward is grateful for the collaborative effort of Pottawatomie County, the City of Shawnee and the City of Tecumseh to offer this funding to our businesses that have been so severely affected by the pandemic," Melot said "Any additional funding provided is passed through 100 percent to the businesses, so on behalf of them we are thankful."

The 33 businesses were notified about their grants Monday and Melot said Shawnee Forward would begin issuing checks later this week.

In addition, Melot said Shawnee Forward plans to address the board at the next Shawnee City Commission meeting and is on the agenda for further discussion at the following meeting.

The businesses that received grants include:

MacArthur Diner, LLC-$2,500.

Cuckoo Bird and Dashing T-$2,000.

Bar H Bar Roadhouse, LLC dba H Bar Branding Iron-$3,500.

New Ideas Printing-$3,500.

Bayly Coffee, LLC-$3,500.

Tecumseh Diner, LLC-$2,500.

Lillycat Inc Snack Sportsline Nutrition-$2,500.

Extreme Inflatables, Inc.-$5,000.

Rustic Rose, Your Neighborhood Florist-$3,000.

Star Skate, Inc.-$5,000.

Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art, Inc.-$5,000.

Lifted Bungee Studio, LLC-$2,500.

Young Men's Christian Association of Shawnee Oklahoma-$5,000.

Greta Madson Enterprises, LLC-$3,500.

Trunk Tacos, LLC dba Sancho Ancho Latin Cuisine-$2,500.

Shaughnessy Group, LLC-$5,000.

Shawnee Laundry Cleaners-$5,000.

Jae W. Choi DDS PLLC-$3,500.

Suitable for Framing, Inc.-$2,000.

Schlotzsky's-$2,500.

Shiane Neiman-$2,500.

Around the World with Shawnee Travel LLC-$3,500.

Tom Willoughby (Del Plaza Barber)-$2,500.

Allen Hubbard-$2,500.

The Lunch Box-$3,500.

Amanda Dickson-$2,500.

Johanna Esterling-$2,500.

Marsh Tractor Service-$2,500.

S & N Investments-$3,500.

Angela Burkhart-$2,500.

Shali Lambert-$2,500.

Kelly Nails-$2,500.

Lena Nails-$2,500.

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