County distributing 2nd round of small business grants

SANTA CRUZ COUNTY—The County of Santa Cruz is accepting applications for the second round of the Santa Cruz County Cares Recovery Program for small businesses impacted by Covid-19. 

Grants of up to $15,000 will be awarded to provide immediate financial support to businesses located in Santa Cruz County, including the cities of Capitola, Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley and Watsonville. This round of grants is available to both essential and non-essential businesses with fewer than 25 employees to aid in maintaining their business and workforce.

Fifty percent of the grants are dedicated to businesses owned by women and disadvantaged individuals. Grants will be awarded through a lottery system with the county divided into three grant zones: South, Mid-, and North County. 

Grant funds may be used for payroll, lease payments for business premises, acquisition of inventory needed to re-open or maintain open status, new telework equipment costs, personal protective equipment and other eligible expenses. 

The County distributed more than $278,000 in the first round of grants. More than $721,000 is available to be awarded during the second round.

Complete applications are due no later than Oct. 11 at 11:59pm. 

Applications and information can be found at:

PV Water hosts candidate forum

PAJARO VALLEY—The Pajaro Valley Water Management Agency is sponsoring a Candidate Forum on Oct. 15 so voters in Division B can become acquainted with the two candidates, John Kegebein and Stephen Rider, running in the Nov. 3 election to become the Director representing this area.

This election will appear on your ballot if you live within the boundaries of Division B. After opening statements, both candidates will respond to questions from the moderator and then the public will have the opportunity to ask questions. Join the meeting from a computer, tablet or smartphone at

People can also dial in by calling 1-877-309-2073 and entering access code: 488-398-429.

Community Bridges supporting fire victims

SANTA CRUZ COUNTY—Community Bridges is aiming to support the recovery of Santa Cruz mountain residents impacted by the CZU August Lightning Complex.

To meet immediate needs for families, Community Bridges is providing direct financial assistance to eligible families. Available due to funding from the Community Foundation of Santa Cruz County and donations from the community, they have distributed grocery and Visa gift cards to over 75 households. 

The agency has also launched a new mobile laundry service that offers free access to washers and dryers to households that have been impacted by losing their home, been displaced or suffered significant smoke damage. The trailer will be located at rotating locations in the Santa Cruz mountains each week.

Funding from the Pajaro Valley Health Trust assisted in the purchase of the trailers and machines. Pleasure Point Electric donated the electrical work and equipment for the installation of the machines. The trailer opened on September 21 at Mountain Community Resources, a program of Community Bridges, in Felton.

Community volunteers are needed to help sustain the program.

For information visit

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.


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