HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — Maryland Governor Larry Hogan announced Monday that nearly 9,000 small business jobs have been saved through coronavirus recovery efforts.
More than $10 million dollars has been awarded to 445 small businesses through the Maryland Department of Labour’s COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund which was introduced in March.
The fund provides crucial financial assistance to small businesses across the state and helped them to avoid layoffs and closures.
The recipients represent nearly 20 diverse industry sectors in each of Maryland’s jurisdictions with the average award size being around $23,000 dollars. The funds will be used for things as purchasing remote access equipment and software to promote teleworking, assisting with employee training and education, purchasing cleaning supplies and services to maintain an onsite workforce, and supplementing employee income through the Department of Labour’s Work Sharing Unemployment Insurance Program.
Both Governor Hogan and Department of Labour Secretary Tiffany Robinson applauded the quick work of the program.
In a statement released on Monday, Secretary Robinson stated that:
“In just a matter of days, Labour created the COVID-19 layoff aversion fund, reviewed applications, and delivered essential financial relief directly to hundreds of small businesses, saving the jobs of nearly 9,000 Marylanders.”
Governor Hogan also stated that the COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund is “a critical part of our comprehensive relief efforts to help small businesses retain their employees and get through this difficult period. He also promised that the state will remain “committed to doing everything we can to help hard-pressed Marylanders and small businesses weather this storm and come back stronger than ever.”
Maryland has gained more than 156,000 jobs during the COVID recovery, and the unemployment rate decreased to 7.6 percent which is 10.2 percent as of July 2020 according to the the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.