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Rebirth Fund dishes out $147K more to flood-affected businesses


February 6, 2017
By Daily Report Staff
Originally Posted on Greater Baton Rouge Business Report

The Louisiana Small Business Rebirth Fund has awarded an additional $147,000 in grants to 29 small businesses in five parishes that were slammed by the August flood.

Recipients of the latest round of funds include auto mechanics, health clinics, engineering companies, veterinarians, janitorial services firms and many more, according to a news release. Seventeen of the 29 companies are minority-owned small businesses.

The fund, created in the wake of the August floods, has parsed out four distributions worth a total of more than $761,000 as of Feb. 1, the release says. Some 142 businesses have benefited so far from the grants, which range from $1,000 to $10,000.

Originally announced by the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry as the Louisiana Small Business Disaster Relief Fund, the program was expanded and rebranded as the Louisiana Small Business Rebirth Fund to help small businesses in the state recover from any disaster moving forward. LABI and the Baton Rouge Area Chamber teamed up with Greater New Orleans Inc., the Louisiana chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business, the Louisiana Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives and One Acadiana to create the fund.

“Six months later, the effects of the August flood are still evident across south Louisiana,” says LABI President and CEO Stephen Waguespack in a prepared statement. “We are grateful to those companies and organizations that have made it possible for us to award additional Rebirth grants and support the recovery of small businesses across the affected area.”

The Rebirth Fund will continue to accept donations, the news release says. Anyone interested in contributing to the Fund are encouraged to visit www.LaBizRebirth.org.