Governor Bill Lee announces COVID-19 business relief program

(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee, Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, House Speaker Cameron Sexton and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group announced a new relief program for Tennessee businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tennessee Business Relief Program will direct approximately $200 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funds through the Department of Revenue directly to small businesses that qualify.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created immense economic pain across our state and especially among small businesses that faced temporary closure,” Gov. Lee said. “As we responsibly steward our federal stimulus money we have worked to quickly prioritize our small businesses and I thank the work of the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group for their partnership in this.”

The Tennessee Business Relief Program amounts awarded will be based on the annual gross sales of the business. More details will be posted on the Department of Revenue’s website in the coming days.

Roughly 28,000 Tennessee businesses are expected to qualify, with more than 73 percent of those businesses earning annual gross sales of $500,000 or less.

The following types of small businesses are eligible under the program:

• Barber shops

• Beauty shops

• Nail salons

• Tatoo parlors, spas and other personal care services

• Gyms and fitness centers

• Restaurants

• Bars

• Hotels and other travel accommodations

• Theaters, auditoriums, performing arts centers and similar facilities

• Museums, zoos and other similar attractions

• Amusement parks

• Bowling centers and arcades

• Marinas

• Amusement, sports and recreational industries

• Promoters of performing arts, sports and similar events

• Agents and managers of artists, athletes and entertainers

• Independent artists, writers and performers.

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