Reminder | State Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program (BEGAP) Open to Vermont Businesses

The Department of Economic Development (DED) officially opened the application for the Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program (BEGAP). The $20 million BEGAP grant program is to help Vermont businesses, nonprofits, and landlords that suffered physical damage in the flood that began July 7, 2023. The money is to be used to help businesses reopen their doors, bring employees back, and help displaced Vermonters return to their rental housing.

Click here for the program website.  The website includes basic information, application portal, a recorded webinar (which includes screenshots of a sample application), and program FAQs.

Highlights from the website:

Eligibility Requirements

Businesses and nonprofits that sustained physical damages during the flooding event beginning July 7, 2023.

If you are an agricultural business, please visit the Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (AAFM) web site for guidance before applying (click here for more).  If agricultural businesses have questions they can email: agr.floodresponse@vermont.gov

An eligible applicant must be a business or nonprofit that meets the following criteria:

  • Established prior to the July 2023 flood
  • Physical property damages must be located in Vermont
  • The location for business operations and/or the business assets must have suffered physical damages from the July 2023 flood
  • For the purpose of the BEGAP grant, physical damages include damage to real estate, leasehold improvements, inventory, machinery, and equipment.
  • Intends to reopen in the same location or elsewhere in Vermont and will utilize the grant funds for this purpose.

The following are ineligible entities:

  • Municipalities
  • Businesses or nonprofits that sustained only economic injury (revenue loss)
  • Individual homeowners (for home-based businesses, this application only pertains to business assets)

Award Calculation 

BEGAP will help applicants recoup a portion of their total net uncovered damages. This is the damage amount remaining after subtracting any insurance proceeds (estimated or received) and other grants or donations to be used to defray the costs of repairing or replacing those damaged assets.

For applicants who have less than $1,000,000 in net uncovered damages:

  • The lesser of 20% of net uncovered damage or $20,000

Applicant can only submit one application per damaged property with a three-property maximum.

Applicants submitting applications for more than one property with damages exceeding $1,000,000 are only eligible for one enhanced award (over $20,000).

For applicants who have net uncovered damages in excess of $1,000,000:

  • Award is calculated as the lesser of 20% of net uncovered damages or
  • $100,000 if applicant employs between 1 and 10 FTEs*
  • $250,000 if applicant employs between 11 and 50 FTEs*
  • $500,000 if applicant employs over 50 FTEs*

*FTEs are the number of full-time equivalent Vermont-based employees prior to the flood. For the purposes of this grant, one FTE works 35 hours per week.

Applicant Information and Documentation

Information Required: 

  • Contact information
  • Damaged property location and ownership documentation such as property tax bill, lease
  • Federal Employer Tax Identification Number (FEIN)
  • Insurance policy information:  type of coverage, policy number, agent contact
  • Dollar amount of damages anticipated to be recouped through insurance
  • Other grants or donations received and used to defray the costs of repairing or replacing those damaged assets
  • Description of the impact of the flooding on the applicant
  • Damage type and estimated costs for repair/replacement
  • An economic injury estimate and description (anticipated or actual revenue loss). This is not being used to calculate the award but is for informational purposes only

Documentation Required:   

  • Most recently filed Federal Tax Return (or 990)
  • Profit and Loss Statement if business started in 2023
  • An updated IRS Form W-9
  • Declaration or Certificate of Insurance for all policies held
  • Supporting documentation for claimed damages (insurance adjusters report, vendor estimates)
  • Repair estimates for physical structures, equipment, inventory, supply purchases or actual paid expenses
  • Photographs of damaged property (maximum of 5)
  • Proof of property ownership (e.g. property tax bill, deed, lease agreement)