December 2, 2020

Jennifer Noveck, Research and Communications Manager
Regional Economic Partnership, Port of Bellingham
(360) 739-5103

Washington State Department of Commerce Opening Applications for Round of Emergency Funding to Small Businesses

Starting the week of November 30, 2020 applications will open for another competitive grant program – called Working Washington Small Business Emergency Grants (WWSBEG) 3.0 – which is designed to continue to provide financial support and relief to small businesses throughout Washington State.

Through the Port of Bellingham, Whatcom County’s associate development organization, numerous relief grant programs, including Working Washington 1.0 and 2.0 were processed and distributed. Round 3 of this grant program, however, will be administered via Washington State Department of Commerce and the National Development Council (NDC).

The purpose of this program is to support small businesses who are continuing to experience economic injury and loss due to COVID-19. Grants will be prioritized for small businesses that are in sectors that have been most impacted by recent public health measures as well as businesses in sectors that have experienced significant, cumulative impacts. Examples include full-service restaurants, bars/pubs, fitness centers, bowling alleys, and music and event venues. To be eligible to apply a business needs to have an annual revenue under $5 million. The maximum grant amount is $20,000.

More information, including eligibility guidelines, criteria, and a checklist for application readiness can be found on the WWSBEG 3.0 on the Port of Bellingham website and the Round 3 webpage on Start Up Washington. Applications will be posted on both websites the week of November 30, 2020. Grant applications received on or before December 10, 2020 will receive priority. Funds will be distributed to high priority businesses on a first come first serve basis.

Regional Economic Partnership Director Don Goldberg stated that, “The Port and the Regional Economic Partnership continue to work to identify additional state and federal resources and distribute that into our community as quickly as possible.” He also said that “We know that many industries and businesses are struggling as we navigate this public health crisis and we hope many Whatcom County businesses will apply for this funding opportunity.”

The Western Washington University Small Business Development Center is ready to provide no cost assistance to businesses in Whatcom County applying for Round 3 funding. To set up an appointment, visit their website to register.

For more information about WWSBEG 3.0, visit:

For more information about the WWU SBDC’s Business Resources, visit:

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
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