Small Business Support

We All Win, Waco

The City of Waco proposes to utilize a significant portion of its American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to support small businesses. Additionally, the City Manager will be adding TIF and General Fund resources to support small businesses in historically blighted commercial corridors.

These programs would represent the largest investment in small business ever made by the City of Waco. This is a recognition of the dedicated and hard-working people that keep the Waco economy moving and attempts to reduce the impacts of COVID-19, construction, and long-term blight on our community.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Businesses with fewer than 25 employees are eligible to apply.
  • Must have been in business in a CDBG Eligible area as of March 3, 2021
  • Must demonstrate HUD eligibility requirements through one of the following:
    • Demonstrate ownership by a low- to moderate-income (LMI) household,
    • Maintain 51% of its employees meeting LMI criteria, or
    • Any other CDBG eligible areas

Scoring Methodology

Applications will be reviewed by a Scoring Committee made up by various leaders in business and local government. Draft score sheets for the ARPA Grant and Construction Mitigation Grant are included below.

Applications will be assessed and scored based on the four components shown below. The maximum score for ARPA Grant and Construction Mitigation is 120. Applications with the highest scores will be reviewed, approved, notified, and funded first.

Program Timeline

ARPA Grant Program Timeline

Pilot Program

The first application process for the ARPA Grant Program will be a pilot program that covers a limited geography. This pilot program will aid in the refinement of the grant process. Only businesses located in East Waco will be eligible during the pilot program.

  • Application Period: August 22, 2022 – September 19, 2022
  • Application Review: September 26, 2022 – October 3, 2022
  • Award Notification: October 10, 2022
  • Funds Distributed: As early as October 21, 2022

During the month of November 2022, the pilot process will be revised and improved based on feedback from community partners and business owners.

The full roll-out of the ARPA Grant Program will occur based on the following schedule. Upon the full roll-out, all areas located in an Enterprise Zone and/or CDBG eligible area will be eligible to apply for ARPA Grant funding. 

Full Rollout Program

  • Application Period: January 4, 2023 – February 3, 2023
  • Application Review: February 20, 2023 – February 24, 2023
  • Award Notification: March 2, 2023
  • Funds Distributed: As early as March 24, 2023 

Façade Improvement Program Timeline

  • Application Period: November 1, 2022
  • Application Review: January 3, 2023 – January 20, 2023
  • Award Notification: January 31, 2021
  • Funds Distributed: 30 Days after Project Completion 

Barriers to Success Timeline

  • Application Period: August 22, 2022 – September 19, 2022
  • Application Review: September 26, 2022 – October 3, 2022
  • Award Notification: October 10, 2022