On or about April 23, 2020, Wells County applied for the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs for a grant from the OCRA COVID-19 Phase 1 Project of the State Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. This program is funded by Title I of the federal Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended. These funds are to be used for an economic development project that will include the following activities: meet the National Objective of 51% Low and Moderate (LMI) job retention in for-profit enterprises that are either: 1) Small businesses with 100 employees or less; 2) Microenterprises (5 employees or less, one must be the owner) and document that the jobs being retained would be lost if not for the grant/loan. Grants to qualified businesses are a maximum of $10,000. Activities funded include: Working capital; Continue business operations; Support remote work. The amount of CDBG funds to be requested is $50,000. The amount of CDBG funds proposed to be used for activities that will benefit low- and moderate-income persons is $50,000. There is no local match for this grant program. Wells County will hold a public hearing on August 11, 2020, at 4:00 pm at the Wells County Annex Building, Lower Level Meeting Room in Bluffton, Indiana 46714 to provide interested parties an opportunity to express their views on the federally funded CDBG grant. Persons with disabilities or non-English speaking persons who wish to attend the public hearing and need assistance should contact the Wells County Area Plan Commission, 223 W. Washington St., Bluffton, IN 46714, (260) 824-6407 not later than Friday, August 7, 2020. Every effort will be made to make reasonable accommodations for these persons.

Information related to this grant will be available for review prior to the public hearing as of July 24, 2020, at the Wells County Area Plan Commission, 223 W. Washington St., Bluffton, Indiana 46714 between the hours of 8:00am to 4:30pm or on our website at www.wellscounty.org/area-planning-commission.

Interested citizens are invited to provide comments regarding these issues either at the public hearing or by prior written statement. Written comments should be submitted to the Wells County Area Plan Commission, Subject: COVID-19 Grant Public Hearing, 223 W. Washington St., Bluffton, IN 46714 to be received no later than August 7, 2020 to ensure placement of such comments in the official record of the public hearing proceedings. A plan to minimize displacement and provide assistance to those displaced has been prepared by the Wells County and is also available to the public. This project will result in no displacement of any persons or businesses. For additional information concerning the proposed project or for technical assistance in submitting a business grant application, please contact Wells County Area Plan Commission, 223 W. Washington St, Bluffton, IN 46714 or by email at wcapc@wellscounty.org, Subject: COVID-19 Small Business Grant.

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