Release Date: July 20, 2021

COVID: What We Know Now (Boulder Small Business Development Center)

State Programs


Additional information has been released on many of the state-level programs that have been discussed in previous newsletters.


Energize Colorado Gap Fund

Previously, we reported that the State allocated $15 million for a new round of funding for this program. The first round occurred in late 2020 and awards were made in early 2021. We understand that there will not be a new application process for this program. The program was significantly oversubscribed in the first round and the additional funding will be used to go back to some applicants that did not receive funding the first time. We do not know when existing applicants will be contacted.  


Colorado Marijuana Entrepreneur Program

This program consists of $4 million in funding for grants and loans within the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT). Although full policies have not been announced, the State has hired a director for the program and a website is expected to go live this week. Applications are scheduled to open in the fall. 


Colorado Meetings & Events Incentive Program

Applications are open for this program which can provide a rebate of up to 10% of certain hard costs incurred for events that bring visitation to Colorado between July 1, 2021 and December 31, 2022. We recently learned that the minimum award amount has been set at $3,500, which means that only events with hard costs in excess of $35,000 will be eligible. These rebates are being managed through the Colorado Tourism Office.

Boulder County Programs


Although these programs are not new, Partners for a Clean Environment (PACE) continues to have funds available for three significant programs. Details for these programs can be found at


Lighting Upgrade Grants Covers 50% of the cost to replace T12 fluorescent lighting with LED


Refrigeration and Restaurant Equipment Grants

Covers 70% of the cost to replace outdated equipment with new energy efficient equipment


Solar Rebates and Grants for Businesses, Nonprofits and Multifamily Housing

Covers up to 70% of the costs with a cap of $35,000


Rural Jump-Start Zone Grants

This program will be housed within the Colorado Economic Development Commission (EDC) and will consist of grants of up to $40,000, or up to $5,000 per new hire for businesses that establish new operations in specified rural communities. Applications are scheduled to open in August.


Small Business Accelerated Growth Program

This program will be housed within OEDIT and will provide development support to businesses with 19 or fewer employees. Businesses selected into the program will have one year to use the support offered by the program and may receive a monetary grant upon completion of the program. Applications are scheduled to open in September.


Colorado Startup Loan Program

This program provides $40 million to small businesses seeking capital to start, restart or restructure a business. Loans and small grants will be made available through a host of lenders that work in communities throughout the state. OEDIT will work with community partners to reach underserved entrepreneurs and small businesses owners. Applications are scheduled to open at the end of 2021.


Disproportionately Impacted Business Startup and Growth Loans

This program provides $1 million for loans to small businesses that have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications are scheduled to open in late 2021.


Disproportionately Impacted Business Technical Assistance

This program provides $900,000 to support technical assistance for businesses that have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications are scheduled to open in late 2021.


Employee Ownership Loan Fund

This program provides loans of up to $10,000 to Colorado business owners transitioning their business to employee-owned (offering 20% or more employees ownership in the business) and to groups of employees purchasing an existing Colorado business to become employee-owned. Applications are scheduled to open in late 2021.


View more information on the Boulder Small Business Development Center website.