Changes Made to the State’s COVID-19 Commercial Rental Assistance Program

Pete CodellaNews

The Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) announced today that the Commercial Rental Assistance program currently has over $30 million in funds available and, with the Legislature’s approval, has changed its requirements to adapt to businesses needs.

As part of S.B. 3006, the COVID-19 Commercial Rental Assistance Program (ComRent) includes $40 million in commercial property rental assistance. GOED is currently administering the grants providing rental relief to Utah small businesses — including nonprofits, sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed persons — who have lost revenue due to measures taken to minimize the public’s exposure to COVID-19.

Program metrics as of July 13, 2020:

Applications started:3,010
Full applications submitted:1,644
Grant funds used:$8,777,410
Average check:$5,489
Most requested sectors:Retail, food and beverage, healthcare

Since the program launch, GOED has communicated and worked with various stakeholders from rural counties, multicultural partners, and commercial real estate sectors. The agency then coordinated with the Legislature to request changes to the program.

The following is a list of changes approved by the Legislature:

  • Restructured the revenue loss percentages:
    • 30% to 44.9% revenue loss — up to 50% of the rent amount may be awarded per month
    • 45%+ revenue loss — up to 100% of the rent amount may be awarded per month
  • Removed the PPP award adjustment
  • Extended from a single month’s rent to two month’s rent
  • Maximum award raised from $10,000 to $15,000
  • Entities with multiple locations maximum award increased to $30,000 and $5,000 per location
  • Adjusted small business definition from 100 employees maximum to 100 full-time employees (FTE; that’s 100 employees at 40 hours per week)
  • Removed unnecessary documentation requirements

“These changes to the COVID-19 Commercial Rental Assistance program will help many businesses that did not qualify previously,” said Val Hale, GOED’s executive director. “We would like to thank the Legislature for making our recommended program changes and hope more commercial renters will apply for the grant program.”

There’s no need for companies to re-apply for the ComRent grant. Those who have already applied will be automatically reconsidered. If they qualify for additional grant money, checks will be mailed.

To learn more about the state’s COVID-19 Commercial Rental Assistance Program, visit Applications for commercial rental assistance will be accepted on a rolling basis while funds are available.