1. Purpose

    The Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit (NRTC) COVID-19 Relief Program is a $3.1 million special program that provides organizations with NRTC neighborhood plans with funding for eligible COVID-19 response activities and costs. The program aims to promote the continued recovery and revitalization of NRTC communities in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, with a special emphasis on supporting vulnerable small businesses. The program is funded by an allocation from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund and grantees must comply with all applicable federal rules around use of these funds. 

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  2. Who May Apply
    Nonprofit organizations with approved NRTC plans as of the FY20 application cycle (2019-20) that submit complete applications and that propose eligible COVID-19 response activities.
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  3. Projects Eligible for Grants
    At least 60% of funds must be allocated for business uses and must be distributed by grantees to small businesses with a physical location in their neighborhood boundaries. Neighborhood boundaries can be viewed on DCA’s Community Asset Map. Funds can be distributed by grantees to businesses as grants.
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  4. Eligible Uses of Funds
    Funds may only be used for expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 and December 30, 2020 that are necessary due to the public health emergency with respect to COVID-19. Examples include the following:

    Business Uses (businesses within the NRTC neighborhood boundary):

    • Commercial mortgage, rent and other bills (utilities, accounts payable) for the period
    • Resources to get business established online (for example, a business needed to revamp website to make delivery available to customers)
    • Perishable inventory that was lost due to an interruption of business 
    • Procurement of masks, gloves, and other personal protective equipment for business owners, staff and customers
    • Shield guards for businesses
    • Procurement of hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes
    • Social distancing signage and decals
    • Procurement of tables, chairs, and other furniture for outdoor dining
    • COVID-19 educational materials, activities, and events aimed at businesses
    • Wages for activities substantially dedicated to mitigating or responding to the COVID-19 public health emergency (excluding bonuses other than hazard pay and overtime)


    Other Uses:

    • All other COVID-19 educational materials, activities, and events
    • Community access to internet services for food shopping
    • Personal protective equipment, hand sanitizer, and sanitizing wipes for community members

    Additional uses beyond these examples require prior approval from DCA.


    The amount of funds requested in an application must be based on the applicant’s assessment of achievement by December 30, 2020, in terms of both its capacity and the scope of assistance to businesses and residents; it should not be less than $75,000.

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  5. Business Certification Requirement
    Businesses receiving funds from grantees must complete a written certification that:

    • they have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 Social Distancing Measures or the Stay-at-Home order (i.e. closed business temporarily, had to lay people off, realized at least a 25% drop in sales).
    • they have not received any COVID-19 relief funding from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, New Jersey Redevelopment Authority, or any other state business recovery program (excluding unemployment compensation from the Department of Labor and Workforce Development) including DCA’s Neighborhood Preservation Program and Main Street New Jersey Program. Businesses that received benefits (such as lease assistance and technical assistance) from the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority, New Jersey Economic Development Authority, and other state recovery programs, but did not receive direct COVID-19 relief funding from these programs, are eligible to receive funds.
    • they will not use the funds to support wages, activities, or purchases that have already received reimbursement from any state, federal, or foundation programs (including distributions from the unemployment insurance fund, the Paycheck Protection Program, SBA loans, and any form of federal CARES Act funding).
    • they have less than $5 million in gross receipts as of the most recent tax reporting year
    • they have at least two employees (including owner) and no more than 100 employees
    • they were in business as of March 17, 2020
    • they have an operational physical location within the NRTC neighborhood boundary as delineated on DCA’s Community Asset Map.

    The State receives the right to conduct post-expenditure audits to ensure the funds are used for allowable purposes.

    Funds may not be used for indirect costs, administration, or to support the salaries of applicant staff unless it is for activities substantially dedicated to mitigating or responding to the COVID-19 public health emergency. All funds received must be fully expended by grantees and/or their subrecipients by December 30, 2020.  Any funds received that won’t be expended by that date must be returned to DCA by December 15, 2020 for reversion to the US Treasury.

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  6. Scoring
    Funding awards will be determined based on three equally weighted factors:

    • Number of commercial parcels in the neighborhood boundary (33.3%)
    • Population in the neighborhood boundary (33.3%)
    • Capacity Score- existing COVID-response activities, number of years active in neighborhood, past grantmaking activity to businesses (33.3%)

    Applicants are not required to provide data on commercial parcels or population, these data are already on file with DCA.

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  7. Application Process
    Funding Announcement released October 1, 2020 
    Applications due October 19, 2020 
    Applications reviewed October 23, 2020
    Notify applicants of award decisions October 28, 2020 
    Anticipated award start date October 30, 2020

    Applications are due by October 19, 2020, with awards expected to be made by October 30, 2020.  Applications must be submitted electronically via NJDCA SAGE (https://dcasage.intelligrants.com/portal.asp).  This will consist of an application that is initiated and submitted at NJDCA SAGE; and a “pre-application” (downloadable from this webpage) that is uploaded to the “Attachments” page of the SAGE application.  Please contact Bradley Harrington with any questions:  Bradley.Harrington@dca.nj.gov.

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  8. Submission Requirements
    • Track Record
      • Provide a description of the organization's past grant/loan activities to local businesses (if applicable).
      • Describe the organization’s COVID-19 response activities in its neighborhood (if any).
      • Number of years organization has served the neighborhood.


    • Assessment of Need
      • Describe the current need for the project/activities.
      • Explain why award would not constitute a duplication of benefits.


    • Budget and Financial Information
      • Prepare a budget including all project costs.
      • List the amount(s) and source(s) of any matching funds and in-kind sources.
      • List the amount(s) of any paid staff time that is dedicated to the project. (if any)


    • Certifications
      • Certify that this agency is not delinquent on any Federal or State debt.
      • Certify that the applicant understands that payments from NJDCA will depend on our submission of all required grant reports.
      • Certify that neither members of our organization's governing body nor members of their families will receive any direct or indirect personal or monetary gain from the funding of this grant.
      • Certify that the organization’s Certification of System for Award Management (SAM) is valid and current.
      • Certify that neither members of the organization's governing body nor members of their families serve on any board, council, commission, committee, or task force that has regulatory authority or advising influence on the funding program.
      • Certification and signature of Board Chairperson.
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  9. Sample NRTC COVID-19 Relief Program Resolution
    Click the link below for a printable pdf of the sample resolution:
    Sample NRTC COVID-19 Relief Program Resolution


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  10. NRTC COVID-19 Relief Pre-Application
    Click the link below for an electronic fillable pdf of the pre-application:
    NRTC COVID-19 Relief Pre-Application

    If you are using a browser other than Internet Explorer, you will need to DOWNLOAD the form before filling it out.

    This pre-application must be uploaded as an attachment to your SAGE application.


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  11. NRTC COVID-19 Relief Application
    Click on the link below to apply for this program.  Applications must be submitted electronically via NJDCA SAGE. https://dcasage.intelligrants.com/portal.asp

    The SAGE application must include uploaded attachment of the Pre-Application.

    Please contact Bradley Harrington with any questions:  Bradley.Harrington@dca.nj.gov.


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