State reports nearly 9,400 businesses benefitted from pandemic grants program

State reports nearly 9,400 businesses benefitted from pandemic grants program
Gov. Steve Sisolak and Treasurer Zach Conine meet with small business owners to tout the success of the PETS grant program. Image: Governor's Office

LAS VEGAS – Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak and Treasurer Zach Conine on Monday held a press event with the Asian Community Development Council in Las Vegas to tout the success of the state’s Pandemic Emergency Technical Support (PETS) grant program. Nearly 9,400 small businesses in the state were awarded a share of the more than $100 million in program funding.

Not all of the businesses have received their funds, however.

“We will distribute the final funds in the coming days, but in total, almost 9,400 small businesses and non-profit organizations were able to receive assistance under this program which helped them make payroll, pay the rent and utilities, and keep their doors open throughout the pandemic,” Gov. Sisolak said.

The PETS grant program was created with coronavirus relief funding from the federal government, originally set at $20 million in October 2020. The pot of funds grew to $51 million shortly thereafter and received another infusion of cash–$50 million more—in February of this year, shortly after the Nevada Legislature convened and approved the spending.

The additional funds were added to help meet demand, and despite this, not all applicants were awarded grants.

More than 13,500 small businesses applied for PETS funds during the submission period, Oct. 19-22, 2020, which was shortened by nearly two weeks after the system was inundated with applications. Technical problems encountered during the application process left many business owners frustrated during that round of grant funding.

Based on the Legislature’s approval of the additional funding, small businesses will need to have appropriated the grant funds they received by Sept. 17. Conine and Sisolak are hoping that businesses will use their funds to help rebuild the state’s economy.

“I’m incredibly proud of the work that was done through this program, but we still have more work to do,” said Conine. “That’s why we’re committed to talking to business owners across the state through the Every Nevadan Recovery Framework to find solutions to rebuild our economy stronger than ever before.” 

A breakdown of grant awards from the program is below: 

  • Disadvantaged businesses, defined as women, Veteran, minority or disability-owned: 4,907 (52%) 
  • Bars and restaurants: 685 (7%) 
  • Chambers of commerce: 31 (0.3%) 
  • Non-profits: 657 (7%) 
  • Arts and culture: 276 (3%) 
  • Other businesses: 2832 (30%)