ST. LUCIE COUNTY, Fla. — New help could be on the way for some St. Lucie County residents who are suffering economically from COVID-19.
Beginning Wednesday, St. Lucie County is now accepting applications for grants through the Cares Act.
So far, the county has been given $13.8 million and can request up to $55.5 million from the state if needed.
"Anything will help right now," said Amber Glover, owner of ECP Event Rentals and Design in Port St. Lucie.
Gilbert says the coronavirus has cut her business nearly in half.
"We basically had about 43 events during the month of March and halfway through more than half of them got canceled," said Gilbert.
St Lucie County residents who have lost work due to COVID-19 and are within the designated income range, could receive up to $4,000.
"You have to show that you were negatively impacted and that you're suffering an economic hardship," said Erick Gill, Communications Director of St. Lucie County.
The grants can only be used for bills such as mortgages, utilities, car payments, or insurance.
Documentation of a past due notice must be provided when filling out the application.
"We had over 250 applications already submitted through the website so certainly the need is there," said Gill.
"The stress levels are different than they are when you're busy," said Gilbert. "We were used to having a certain income and that has been affected by this. It's pretty much stopped."
The $13.8 million will be split accordingly:
Economic Recovery - 30%
Social Services - 30%
Public Safety - 20%
Municipalities - 10%
Future COVID and Hurricane Response Reserves - 10%
For more information on the program and to see if you're eligible, visit recoverstlucie.org/cares-act/.