The Fourth Round of the Talbot CARES Small Business Grant Program is open.

The Talbot CARES COVID-19 Small Business Emergency Relief Grant Program offers up to $10,000 working capital to assist Talbot County small businesses and nonprofits with disrupted operations caused by COVID-19. Businesses and not-for-profit organizations must demonstrate financial stress or disrupted operations. This is the fourth and final grant for 2020. Apply by December 11.

Eligibility for Businesses and Not-For-Profit Organizations

  • Must be located in Talbot County.
  • Must have been in operation since January 2020.
  • Must be in good standing in the State of Maryland.
  • Must not be delinquent on any taxes for the years 2016, 2017, or 2018.
  • Limited to organizations with 50 employees or less.
  • Must demonstrate a loss of business revenue of at least 25% related to COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • Must be used for expenses incurred between March 16, 2020, and December 30, 2020.

Ineligible Businesses

Excluded business operations include real estate investment firms, firms involved in speculative activities, dealers of rare coins and stamps, firms involved in lending activities, pyramid sales plans, firms involved in illegal activities, gambling activities, charitable institutions other than 501(c)3 organizations, government-owned corporations, consumer and marketing cooperatives, and churches and organizations promoting religious objectives.

Qualifying Expenditures              

  • Payroll expenses, excluding hazard pay
  • Rent or mortgage principle and interest payments; excludes property tax
  • Utility expenses, excluding municipal electric, gas, water, and sewer expenses
  • Business materials or inventory, excluding alcohol
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for employees and customers
  • Sanitizing supplies for use by employees and customers
  • Disinfecting equipment or services
  • Equipment related to improvement of business processes needed as a result of COVID-19; examples include touchless faucets and touchless point-of-sale systems
  • Marketing services specifically related to COVID-19
  • Similar expenses that occur in the ordinary course of business

 Application Documents

  • Completed application form including name, address, phone number, EIN, business type, number of employees, and other business details.
  • Description of the adverse impact of COVID-19 on business and evidence of business disruption.
  • Explanation of how the funds will be used.
  • Proposed budget for requested funds, including vendor name, address, and telephone number, goods and/or services to be purchased, and amount of purchase. May be quote or invoice, if available.


  • 2019 and 2020 Profit and Loss Statements; comparative if available
  • 2019 business tax returns, Schedule C, Form 990, or 2018 Profit and Loss Statement if 2019 tax return has not been filed
  • Business plan showing revenue and expenditure projections for new businesses that have not yet filed tax returns
  • W-9 IRS Form
  • Other pertinent financial data

Certification under penalty that all information is correct.

Application Process

Applicants will be asked to upload the required documents to the application portal and will be notified when the application and supporting documentation is received. Applicants will also be notified if more information if needed.

If awarded, grantees will be required to sign a letter of agreement.

Final Report

  • Final report is due 60 days after receipt of funds.
  • Must include letter that explains how money was spent, including a list of expenditures, as well as the business progress achieved.
  • Must include supporting documentation of expenditures such as copies of invoices and cancelled checks.
  • Additional documentation may be required for verification of expenditures.
  • Final report subject to audit.

For more information on the Talbot CARES COVID-19 Small Business Emergency Relief Grant Program, contact Cassandra Vanhooser, Director, Talbot County Department of Economic Development and Tourism at 410-770-8000; email

Or download this form. Small Business Grant Application v4 – Fillable