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Welcome!

The City of Groton Department of Planning and Economic Development put together this resources information page for local businesses to better understand economic development initiatives, projects, and resources at the local, state, and federal level. This page will be updated regularly as more information becomes available.

Incorporated in 1964 the City of Groton takes pride in the entrepreneurial spirit, vision, and perseverance found in its business community. Throughout the City’s history, economic growth has been fueled by ambitious individuals and collaborative efforts that have pushed the needle forward. The City of Groton’s Economic Development staff and commission are committed to supporting the recovery and revitalization of our local economy by proactively unifying economic interests.  Our team strives to unite stakeholders in creating a future that realizes the community’s full potential.

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Phase 1 of Reopen Connecticut is currently planned to take effect beginning May 20.

Businesses shall take these rules as the minimum baseline of precautions needed to protect public health in Connecticut. Individual businesses should take additional measures as recommended by industry guidelines or by common sense applied to their particular situation. Note that rules are subject to change

In addition, Businesses must complete a self-certification from DECD to receive a Reopen CT badge. Once completed, businesses can choose to post the badge on-site and on social media to advertise adherence to CT rules and build customer confidence.

Sector Reopenings

Safeguards will  include, among other measures:

  • Capacity limit of 50% for businesses that reopen.
  • Strict cleaning and disinfection protocols in all settings.
  • Those who can work from home should continue to do so
  • Those in high-risk groups (comorbidities) and over the age of 65 should continue to stay safe and stay home
  • Facemasks should continue to be worn in public at all times.
  • Social gatherings will be restricted to a maximum of 5 people

 

Common Sector Rules include:

  • Hand sanitizer shall be made available at entrance points and common areas, where possible
  • Cleaning, disinfectant products, and/or disposable disinfectant wipes should be made available near commonly used surfaces, where possible (e.g., ticket counters).
  • Post clear signage that includes the state hotline (211) for employees and customers to report potential violations of these rules.
  • Whistleblower Protection: Employers may not retaliate against workers for raising concerns about COVID related safety and health conditions. Additional information can be accessed at www.OSHA.gov

*Note* Disinfectants are irritants and sensitizers and should be used cautiously. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at least daily and if shared after each use.  Use products that meet EPA’s criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2 and that are appropriate for the surface. Prior to wiping the surface, allow the disinfectant to sit for the necessary contact time recommended by the manufacturer. Train staff on proper cleaning procedures to ensure safe and correct application of disinfectants.

Helpful Resources:

Resturant (Outdoor Only)

In Phase 1, restaurants can only open outdoor areas at up to 50% capacity, no bar areas

  • Rearrange space to maintain at least 6 feet of distance between customers. Ensure tables are at least 6 ft apart. Distance shall be measured from the closest chair at one table to the closest chair at another table.
  • Rearrange workstations so that food workers do not face one another and are 6 ft apart where possible (e.g., stagger workstations on either side of processing lines).
  • Use rolled or packaged silverware.
  • Use single use packets or containers
  • Sanitize seating area, tables, and common items after each seating.
  • Offer paper menus and dispose after guests have ordered, or display menu on a wall/white board, and/or encourage customers to view the menu on their phone

 

Helpful Resources:

Retail

In Phase 1, Retail businesses can open at up to 50% capacity

Helpful Resources:

Office

In Phase 1, offices can open at up to 50% capacity.

Employees are encouraged to continue to work from home where possible.

Helpful resource:

Hair Salons & Barber Shops

On May 18th Governor Lemont announced that hair salons and barbershops will not open until June 1st.

Hair salons & barbershops will open at 50% capacity by appointment only, with waiting rooms closed. Services offered will be restricted to hairdressing and eyebrows, nothing that would require removal of a facemask (e.g., beard trimming, lip waxing, etc.). Blow drying not permitted.

Helpful Resources:

Museums

The State of Connecticut wants to enable its citizens to continue to enjoy its rich cultural and historical heritage, as well as some quality times outdoors. In Phase 1, museums and zoos can open outdoor exhibits at up to 50% capacity.

Museums and zoos shall calculate maximum safe occupancy for each exhibit area/room to allow for social distancing between groups and to comply with state social gathering size guidance. Establishments should leverage signage, floor markings and enhanced presence of attendants and other personnel to enforce occupancy rate.

Notices:

  • CONNSTEP and CBIA have partnered with the state of Connecticut to help distribute infrared thermometers to small businesses with 100 employees or fewer. The thermometers, which can support workplace screening and health checks, are available free to Connecticut employers with 100 or fewer employees. Eligible businesses can request a thermometers through this website. Requested thermometers will be distributed based on the city or town in which the business is located. Designated municipalities will contact local employers with the date, time, and location to collect requested thermometers.
  • FREE Face Masks for Essential Businesses: CONNSTEP and CBIA have partnered with the state of Connecticut to assist in the distribution of recently donated surgical masks to eligible businesses.
    Eligible businesses include those listed as essential businesses as defined by the state with 50 employees or fewer. Eligible businesses can request no more than two masks per employee by filling out the form found here. Small businesses with employees that have little contact with the public are strongly urged to create their own face masks or face coverings following CDC guidelines to ensure the limited supply of surgical masks go to businesses that need them the most.
  • The City of Groton, is happy to announce a partnership with the City of New London that will allow our Spanish speaking business owners a ‘Help Line’ to navigate available relief programs. Please call 860-437-6309 or email sbinfo@newlondonct.org to make an appointment. Now is the time where partnerships are vital in getting information to all of our small business/ non-profit owners. We are all in this together.
  • La Ciudad Groton, se complace en anunciar una colaboración con la ciudad de New London que les permitirá a nuestros propietarios de pequeñas empresas de habla española a utilizar el Centro de Ayuda paraevaluar los programas de asistencia disponibles. Por favor llamar al 860-437-6309 enviar un correo electrónico a sbinfo@newlondonct.org para hacer una cita. Este es el momento vital para proveerles información a todos los propietarios de pequeñas empresas y organizaciones sin fines de lucro. Estamos juntos en esto.

 

Funding Opportunities:

The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) has created a COVID-19 Business Emergency Response Unit dedicated to assisting businesses to navigate resources. For specific questions, email the Joint Information Center at COVID19.JIC@ct.gov, or call the DECD business hotline at 860-500-2333. The DECD also offers the following programs:

  • Small Business Express Program
  • Economic and Manufacturing Assistance Act
  • Minority Business Revolving Loan Fund

For more information please visit DECD’s Coronavirus Business Recovery 

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small business suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. For more information on:

  • Paycheck Protection Program
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan
  • SBA Express Bridge Loan
  • SBA Debit Relief Program

Please visits SBA Coronavirus Relief or CTSBDC Business Resource Center.

U.S Chamber of Commerce Foundation is now offering the following:

  • Save Small Business Fund is a new grant program offering $5000 in short-term relief for small employers in the United States.
  • Path Forward is a program designed to lead national conversation on how America can return to work. The conversations will explore:
    • Comprehensive Framework of Policy Considerations and Operational Questions
    • Virtual Event Series to Explore How to Reopen the Economy Safely, Successfully, and Sustainably
    • Soliciting Input from Diverse Sources: Big, Midsize, and Small Businesses as well as its network of Local, State and International Chambers and Association

Webinars will be held on Mondays and Thursdays from 3-4pm. All webinars will be recorded and made available online.

 

The Connecticut Artists Relief Grant Program provides $500 grants to individual artists and teaching artists who live in Connecticut and whose creative practices and incomes are being adversely impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19). This is unrestricted funding that may be used for any kind of relief.

 

Community Economic Development Fund provides loans and technical assistance to Connecticut small business owners, primarily in low-to-moderate income communities, who are not able to obtain traditional bank financing.

 

Connecticut Community Investment Corporation provides access to capital that may not be available elsewhere as well as financing opportunities for expanding businesses looking to purchase real estate and/or machinery and equipment.

 

BDC Capital pools money from many financial institutions to share the risks of helping promising companies expand. BDC Capital provides financial assistance with loans, mezzanine and equity investments, guarantees, and financial services to businesses of every type and description.

 

The State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) is offering a reimbursable Stewardship Relief Grant of up to $1,000 to Connecticut 501(c)3 nonprofits. The purpose of this funding is to encourage and support the continued safeguarding of historic resources at a time when many organizations are experiencing economic distress because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Eligible reimbursable expenses are those related to the basic utility and regular maintenance costs associated with the upkeep of a designated historic resource.

 

Resources:

New Tax Credits For COVID-Related Paid Leave– The Families First Coronavirus Response Act provides tax credits to reimburse employers for the costs of providing paid sick leave and paid family and medical leave to employees unable to work because of the coronavirus.

COVID-19: Tips for Small Businesses

Business Interruption Insurance: A business interruption insurance policy should list or describe the types of events it covers. Events that are not described in the policy are typically not covered. It is important to review the policy exclusions, coverage limits, and applicable deductibles with your agent, broker or insurer. The Connecticut Insurance Departments Novel Coronavirus and Business Interruption Insurance FAQ provides more information.

CT Lodging Association

US Department of Agriculture Coronavirus FAQ’s

Employers reducing hours but not furloughing employees can partner with CT Department of Labor’s Shared Work Program, which allows employers to reduce employees’ work schedules by 10 percent to 60 percent and supplement lost wages with unemployment benefits

CT Small Business Development Center has an array of free online training videos for entrepreneurs.

Constant Contact provides Small Business Action Plans designed to assist businesses in managing their organization through tough times.

Connecticut for Businesses

SeCTer

Eastern Connecticut Chambers of Commerce

Greater Mystic Chambers of Commerce

Advance CT

Eastern CT Workforce Investment Board

Explore More Groton

May 20th @ 10:00am: CT Lodging Industry Reopening Webinar (registration required)

May 20th @ 11:00am: CTSBDC- Business Resilience Series (registration required)

May 22nd @ 8:30am: CTSBDV- COVID-19 Business Resources: Reopening ( registration required)

May 22nd @ 11:00am: Eastern CT Chambers of Commerce- PPP and other Financial Challenges during COVID-19 (registration required and $15 fee for non-members)

May 29th @ 11:00am: Eastern CT Chambers of Commerce- Preparing a Successful Reopening Strategy (registration required and $15 fee for non-members)

May 25th- June 29th @ 10:00am: WBDC Group Support- Monday Morning Reboot (registration required)

July 1st  (rolling basis): (WBDC) Financial Coaching Program

The 2019 Groton Economic Development Strategy is designed to empower Groton communities in creating an economic future that realizes their full potential. The vision, becoming communities of choice while hosting a diverse economy with innovation and activity that will lead to regional transformation and shared prosperity.
What sets this strategy apart from others is the guiding principle of putting people first. Groton is home to a diverse population with varying needs and interest. This strategy seeks to look at the intersection of people with place.
The Strategy’s Overarching Goals include:

  • Increase the percentage of people who both live and work in Groton
  • Shape Groton’s pockets of economic activity into places where people connect
  • Strengthen and diversify the transportation network to accommodate transformative growth
  • Promote and connect Groton’s educational assets from early education through higher education, lifelong learning, and new career development
  • Grow and diversify existing and emerging opportunities
  • Provide an environment that nurtures entrepreneurs and startup companies
  • Connect, communicate, and educate on economic development

For more detailed listings of activities that will ultimately bring about success please refer to the following:

Groton Economic Development Strategy

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Economic Development Action Plan Matrix
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Business Soft-Cost Grant
Grant funds are available to reimburse owners/operators for soft costs associated with opening or expanding a small business in the City of Groton. Eligible expenses include: architectural fees, survey/soil scientist costs, engineering expenses, legal fees specific to planning and zoning, and consultant fees specific to business operations, pre-approved by staff.
Business Soft Cost Grant Policies and Procedures
Business Soft Cost Grant Application

Tax Increment Financing
TIF Districts leverage the increased tax assessment that is realized over a baseline assessment value. The tax revenue generated is placed into its own account and can be reinvested into the District for public infrastructure improvements (i.e. utilities, streets, walks, recreation, etc.), used to assist with private development, or moved into the general fund for other purposes. The City has adopted a TIF district along the Thames/Bridge Street corridor from I-95 to Eastern Point Road and extending through the Five Corners area to Clearance B Sharp highway. Please refer to the map below. For more information visit City of Groton Tax Increment Financing District

Economic Assistance Fund
Financial support for public infrastructure associated with new development projects. Examples uses include: utility line extensions, sidewalk/road improvements, and traffic control/street lighting.
Economic Assistance Fund

Enterprise Zone
Companies involved in manufacturing, research associated with manufacturing and distribution warehousing (new construction/expansion only) as well as certain service companies that develop properties in an Enterprise Zone or a zone that is eligible for Enterprise Zone-level benefits will receive:

  • a five-year, 80% abatement of local property taxes on qualifying real estate and personal property (note: the company must be new to the municipality’s grand list as a direct result of a business expansion or renovation); and
  • a 10-year, 25% credit on the portion of the corporate business tax that is directly attributable to a business expansion or renovation project, as determined by the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services. The credit may increase to 50% based on number of new jobs created.

Newly formed corporations located in a zone qualify for a 100% corporate tax credit for their first three taxable years and a 50% tax credit for the next seven taxable years.

Eligibility: These programs are designed to encourage capital improvements to land and/or buildings. Businesses must be prepared to either:

  • renovate an existing facility by investing at least 50% of the facility’s prior assessed value in the renovation; Or
  • construct a new facility; Or
  • expand an existing facility; Or
  • acquire a facility that has been idle for a stated minimum time frame

For more information visit CT Department of Economic and Community Development

New or moving to the area?

Get connected with the best of Eastern Connecticut through Community Concierge Relocation Guide

For additional information contact:

Cierra Patrick
Economic Development Specialist
860-446-4066
patrickc@cityofgroton-ct.gov

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Due to the COVID-19 outbreak the Municipal Building has been closed to the public. All City functions can be performed via phone and by using the drop box in front of the building
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