Tuesday is the day. Beginning Nov. 10, 2020, at 9:00 a.m., the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) is launching Phase 2 of the NJ Small and Micro Business PPE Access Program. New Jersey-based small businesses and nonprofit organizations with 100 or fewer employees are able to apply to receive 25% discounts on purchases of personal protective equipment (PPE) from NJEDA-approved vendors.
“Small businesses are the cornerstone of New Jersey’s economy. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it is crucial that we help them make the necessary changes to reopen and continue operating safely,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan. “The NJ Small and Micro Business PPE Access Program is a creative solution that leverages government and private resources to help business owners who have been hit the hardest by the pandemic acquire the protective equipment they need at an affordable price.”
The second phase of the PPE Access Program makes $20.4 million available to subsidize small and micro-businesses’ PPE purchases from Staples and Office Depot. During this phase, businesses with 100 or fewer full-time equivalent employees (FTEs) can receive grants equal to 25% of the cost of purchases made through these Designated Vendors.
All eligible businesses can receive up to $400 in discounts, and businesses operating in one of New Jersey’s 715 census tracts that were eligible to be designated as Opportunity Zones can receive up to $500. These grants are applied in addition to the 10% discount offered to all businesses, meaning small businesses can save up to a third of the cost of their PPE purchases.
During Phase 1 of the program, which began on Nov. 5, businesses needed to provide masks, gloves and other PPE to their workers, or face inspections, fines, or even shut-downs from the state labor department. The NJEDA identified and vetted “Designated Vendors,” including Boxed, Office Depot, and Staples, who have partnered with the Authority to create “microsites” where New Jersey-based businesses can purchase a curated selection of PPE products at a 10% discount.
More information is available at https://covid19.nj.gov/ppeaccess.