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(April 30, 2021) 

A total of 37 Ocean City businesses are better protected against the effects of the covid-19 pandemic thanks to grants from the Ocean City Development Corporation.

OCDC Executive Director Glenn Irwin said via email this week that about $101,000 of a total $138,652 pot of emergency relief funds will pay for face masks for employees, anti-viral cleaning supplies, sprayers, hand sanitizers, portable air purifiers and touchless thermometers for businesses within the Ocean City Main Street District.

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Through the program, which derived from a total $7 million allotment the state issued to 41 Main Street programs in February, businesses with less than 10 full-time employees could apply for up to $1,000, those with 10 to 20 full-time employees could apply up to $2,000, and businesses with more than 20 full-time employees could apply for up to $3,000. A minimum of $250 of financial assistance per business was set.

Irwin said a total of 44 businesses applied for a pot of “well over $180,000” of requested funds.

He said several of the rejected applications were outside of the town’s designated Main Street District, while others were not approved because of insufficient information and backup.

The second phase of the program, which will allocate the remaining more than $37,000, will help businsses buy covid-related items in 2021. Phase one allowed them to buy items in 2020.

“OCDC has attempted to spread this grant money to as many businesses as possible,” Irwin said. “That is why we capped our maximum cap to a lower amount than other Main Street districts. Ocean City Main Street district has hundreds of businesses in its designated area.”

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