QUINCY — A grant program to encourage innovative startup businesses to set up shop in Quincy is under consideration by city officials.
During Thursday’s Quincy Next Strategic Plan Commission meeting, Mayor Kyle Moore said the city had approximately $270,000 available for the program, which had been earmarked for local programs that are now defunct. One such program was the Helping Establishments Re-Open or HERO program, which offered utility bill discounts to customers who shopped at certain local retailers and businesses.
Quincy Director of Planning and Development Chuck Bevelheimer said meetings have been scheduled with Quincy University and the Quincy Chamber of Commerce for assistance in the project.
Initially, Bevelheimer suggested investing $25,000 to $40,000 for eligible startups but that number is still being fine tuned. In addition to startup investments, Moore said some money should be put towards marketing the program to entrepreneurs in the area.
“There’s no (business) in the hopper that we’re thinking about,” Bevelheimer said. “We’re hoping there will be some applicants that come forward but I can’t tell you I have a business in mind.”
Bevelheimer said certain businesses may be ineligible for funding, such as cannabis distribution businesses, businesses engaged in gambling activities outside of state-licensed video gaming and businesses engaged in a sexual nature.
“I just think we’re going to be frugal in our valuation of these projects and make sure we’re doing right by the community,” he said.
The commission also brainstormed certain conditions these companies must adhere to, such as inspections and the submission of progress reports, biannual financial reports, job creation and revenue data and any capital investment documentation.
Moore said the project is in its infancy so it has not been presented to the city council.